Euro 2020: Spain adds Kepa Arrizabalaga to six-man ‘parallel’ training squad after Sergio Busquets tested positive for Covid | Football news
Spain have added Kepa Arrizabalaga to their training squad as they continue to deal with the fallout from Sergio Busquets’ positive Covid test.
Busquets, who is set to become Spain’s captain at Euro 2020, tested positive on Sunday – just eight days before starting his campaign against Sweden in Seville.
Spain manager Luis Enrique responded by calling up five players to a practice squad on Monday, with Kepa’s arrival on Tuesday making him the sixth addition.
He joins Leeds forward Rodrigo Moreno, Valencia midfielder Carlos Soler, Celta Vigo winger Brais Mendez, West Ham’s Pablo Fornals and Villarreal defender Raul Albiol at camp.
The additional six players will train in a “parallel bubble” away from the main 24-player squad in case they are needed to replace Busquets or any other player forced to retire.
The other 23 members of the Spanish squad, as well as the coaching staff, went into self-isolation after Busquets tested positive.
Spain’s FA confirmed on Monday that they all had negative results but will continue to train on their own ahead of Monday’s clash with Sweden.
Spain’s Sports Minister Jose Manuel Rodriguez Uribes said the team will receive a Covid vaccine on Wednesday, radio said Cadena Ser: “We make an exception because they represent us in a high level competition.”
Spain were due to face Lithuania in their final warm-up friendly for Euro 2020 on Tuesday, but their U21s will now play the game.
Kepa has 11 caps for Spain after making his debut in a friendly victory over Costa Rica in November 2017.
He appeared to have established himself as his country’s No.1 in 2019, but a loss of form – causing him to lose his place in goals at Chelsea to Edouard Mendy – brought him back to the bench in 2020 .
The 26-year-old has been excluded from the original Spain squad for the Euro, but could now be added if one of David de Gea, Unai Simon or Robert Sanchez were to step down.
Spain at Euro 2020
Goalkeepers: Unai Simon (Athletic Club), David de Gea (Manchester United), Robert Sanchez (Brighton).
Defenders: Jose Gaya (Valencia), Jordi Alba (Barcelona), Pau Torres (Villarreal), Aymeric Laporte (Manchester City), Eric Garcia (Manchester City), Diego Llorente (Leeds), Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).
Midfielder : Marcos Llorente (Atletico Madrid), Sergio Busquets (Barcelona), Rodri (Manchester City), Pedri (Barcelona), Thiago (Liverpool), Koke (Atletico Madrid), Fabian (Napoli), Dani Olmo (RB Leipzig), Pablo Sarabia ( Paris Saint Germain).
Forward: Gerard Moreno (Villarreal), Alvaro Morata (Atletico Madrid), Ferran Torres (Manchester City), Adama Traoré (Wolves), Mikel Oyarzabal (Real Sociedad).
Sky Bet odds: 8/1
Best Euro finish: Champions (1965, 2008 and 2012)
- Monday June 14: Spain vs Sweden; Kick-off at 8 p.m. (Seville)
- Saturday June 19: Spain vs Poland; Kick-off at 8 p.m. (Seville)
- Wednesday June 23: Slovakia vs Spain; Kick-off 5 p.m. (Seville)