The Korean national soccer team led by coach Paulo Jorge Bento, which will play an exhibition match against Japan for the first time in 10 years, will apply strict Covid-19 quarantine rules. The team is determined not to repeat the nightmarish situation of the pandemic that affected several members and coaching staffers during its tour to Austria in November last year.
The Korea Football Association announced Covid-19 quarantine rules and guidelines on Sunday ahead of its match against Team Japan on upcoming Thursday. In summary, the quarantine rules require daily Covid-19 testing, and thorough separation of players from outsiders.
Team Korea, which will be assembled at Incheon International Assembly on Monday, will undergo a Covid-19 test within 72 hours after departure from Korea. Players will carry them with a certificate of Covid-19 negativity, and be provided with face shields, protective clothing, and masks. During the flight, players will travel separately from ordinary passengers in the cabin.
Upon arrival at Narita International Airport in Japan on Monday, they will receive an antigen test before heading to the hotel. Players and staffers who are found to be Covid-19 positive will be isolated from others, before undergoing additional tests. During their stay in Japan, players and coaching staff will take the Covid-19 test every day. After confirming the outcome of the tests, players will either participate in training and the match or be isolated from others.
Players and coaching staff will only be allowed to move to and from the hotel, training sites and the stadium, and be banned from outing. If anyone inevitably has to go out, he has to have a prior consultation with the team doctor. Each player will be using a single room at the hotel, and will be allowed to enter the treatment center at the hotel while wearing long pants all the time. Within the hotel, players and coaches are prohibited from using the public shower booth, sauna, fitness center, and swimming pool. Two buses will be operated to transport the team to help ensure physical distancing to the extent possible.