Covid-19 and AS Roma: A timeline

Coronavirus has disrupted the sporting world more than any other single cause since the Second World War.

Football matches had to stop for a number of months, and stadia taken a long time to get back to full capacity.

Like any club, Roma have been affected by the virus.

The following timeline details the most significant events related to Roma and Covid-19.

9 March, 2020

Sport halts in Italy

With Italy being the first European country to really suffer the effects of the virus, the country entered lockdown on March 9th. It meant that all sporting events, including Serie A, Serie A Femminile and the Campionato Primavera, had to be postponed for at least one month – but it eventually took longer for things to get back up and running.

Europa League tie postponed

Travel restrictions between Spain and Italy led to the first leg of the Round of 16 Europa League tie between Sevilla and Roma being postponed. It would later be rescheduled as a one-off game in August, which Roma lost.

11 March, 2020
8 June, 2020

Serie A Femminile cancelled

While the men’s team were able to re-start their season, there was no such fate for Roma Women. The Serie A Femminile season was cancelled with six games still to play – as well as the Coppa Italia Femminile. Roma were just one point away from a Champions League space at the time of the cancellation.

Campionato Primavera cancelled

Just like the women’s team, the under-19s were aslo unable to finish their season. The Primavera championship was cancelled on June 17th, just a week before the senior Serie A season was due to recommence. A points-per-game formula determined the final standings, with Roma finishing sixth.

17 June, 2020
24 June, 2020

Serie A resumes behind closed doors

Roma’s first team were able to conclude their 2019-20 season, but fans could not attend the remaining matches. The first game back saw Roma defeat Sampdoria 2-1 thanks to a pair of Edin Dzeko volleys on June 24th. The Serie A season concluded with a 3-1 win at Juventus on August 1st, before the Europa League game against Sevilla – at a neutral venue in Germany – five days later.

Two Primavera players test positive

While several clubs had had confirmed cases by this point, Roma had not. However, they confirmed that two anonymous players from the Primavera had tested positive for the virus, shortly before pre-season training was scheduled to begin.

18 August, 2020
19 August, 2020

Antonio Mirante tests positive

One day later, Roma had their first case of Covid-19 in the first team. Goalkeeper Antonio Mirante announced via social media that he had tested positive for the virus, and hence had to miss the start of pre-season while he was in quarantine.

Carles Perez tests positive

On the day Roma returned for Covid-19 checks before pre-season, one player immediately produced a positive result. Winger Carles Perez had to isolate, despite having no symptoms.

27 August, 2020
28 August, 2020

First pre-season training session cancelled as Bruno Peres tests positive

The following day, Roma were due to undergo their first training session of pre-season. However, they had to cancel it, because full-back Bruno Peres tested positive for the virus. He was also asymptomatic.

Justin Kluivert tests positive

Later that day, Roma had a fourth case of coronavirus in their first team. Winger Justin Kluivert also tested positive for the virus, but made no official announcement.

28 August, 2020
3 September, 2020

Positive Czech case delays Patrik Schick sale

Coronavirus also affected Roma’s transfer activity during the summer window. For example, striker Patrik Schick was due to undergo a medical with Bayer Leverkusen, but it was delayed due to a member of the Czech Republic camp he was on international duty with testing positive for the virus. Schick, who was negative, eventually completed his move to Leverkusen five days later.

Bruno Peres tests negative

Fonseca was also able to call on the services of Bruno Peres again just in time for the new season. The right-back tested negative three days before the season began. He did not play in the first game, but has since returned to action on the pitch.

16 September, 2020
4 September, 2020

Mirante tests negative

The first player to contract the virus was also the first to recover. Mirante confirmed he was able to return 15 days before the first game of the season, which he eventually played in.

Carles Perez tests negative

After undergoing a period of isolation, Perez was able to return to training after testing negative 11 days before the first game of the new season.

8 September, 2020
24 September, 2020

Fans allowed back into stadia in minimal capacity

After Roma’s first game of the season had been played behind closed doors, the president of the Lazio region cleared the way for 1,000 fans to return to the stadium for their upcoming matches. Three days later, a small portion of fans returned to Stadio Olimpico for a game against Juventus, which ended as a draw. Further games against Udinese and Benevento in Seire A, and Young Boys in the Europa League, also saw 1,000 fans present, with social distancing measures in place.

Kluivert tests negative

Kluivert subsequently returned a negative test on September 14th, allowing him to return to training. He made two appearances in the new season before leaving for RB Leipzig on loan.

14 September, 2020
12 October, 2020

Amadou Diawara tests positive on international duty

The first player to test positive while the season was underway was Amadou Diawara. He contracted the virus while on international duty with Guinea. The 23-year-old midfielder tested positive on October 12th, by which time he had played in two games. He then entered a period of quarantine.

Riccardo Calafiori tests positive

Just over two months since making his senior Roma debut, Riccardo Calafiori’s hopes of more first team opportunities halted on October 18th, when he tested positive for the virus. The young left-back went into isolation.

18 October, 2020
23 October, 2020

Gianluca Mancini tests positive

Roma’s preparation for a big game against Milan was disrupted by the news that defender Gianluca Mancini had tested positive three days before the game. However, he felt fine.

Mancini tests negative

Just one day later, Mancini returned two swab tests that were both negative. Hence, it appeared his positive test was in fact an error. Therefore, he was able to play against Milan.

24 October, 2020
24 October, 2020

Games return to being played behind closed doors

As fears of a second wave began to materialise, new measures came in to protect the public. Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte confirmed games would have to occur without any fans again. The first match to be played behind closed doors again was against Milan on October 26th.

Women’s Primavera Championship postponed

While the 2020-21 season had been able to commence, it soon halted for Roma Women’s eldest academy group. The under-19s had won their league the season before, beating Juventus in a final to determine the champion after winning all their games before the league stopped. It was a brief time of celebration, though, as shortly into the new season, the league was indefinitely postponed on October 29th.

29 October, 2020
31 October, 2020

Roma Women cup game postponed after three positive tests

Roma Women’s senior team were meant to commence their Coppa Italia campaign on November 1st, after the league had got underway. However, their game against Roma CF was postponed after three members of the coaching staff tested positive. It would eventually take place in January after three further postponements.

Campionato Primavera pauses

Roma’s Primavera had started the season in spectacular fashion, leading the way in their league after winning all six of their opening games. However, their good spell of form paused when the Campionato Primavera 1 announced its postponement until December 3rd. The decision also affected Primavera Cup games. The suspension was later extended until January 23rd.

6 November, 2020
6 November, 2020

Kaja Erzen tests positive

Separately, Kaja Erzen became the first Roma Women player to have the virus. The full-back tested positive while on international duty with Slovenia. Asymptomatic, she had not had contact with any of her club teammates.

Edin Dzeko tests positive

Roma received their biggest blow yet in relation to Covid-19 when captain Edin Dzeko became the first of a large number of first team players to test positive in early November. The striker had to self-isolate, missing Roma’s game against Genoa before the international break.

6 November, 2020
8 November, 2020

Pietro Boer tests positive

The spate of cases continued when Primavera goalkeeper Pietro Boer, who had been travelling with the senior squad, also tested positive before the Genoa match. All other players, other than Dzeko, Diawara and Calafiori, were negative at the time.

Three positive cases in one day

After that Genoa game, and just before the international break, three more players tested positive. Midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini and defenders Davide Santon and Federico Fazio all contracted the virus. Pellegrini reported mild symptoms, Santon said he was feeling well and Fazio made no comments.

9 November, 2020
10 November, 2020

Marash Kumbulla tests positive

One day later, another first team defender, Marash Kumbulla, also confirmed he had the virus, but was asymptomatic. Thus, the number of senior Roma players out at the same time with Covid-19 rose to five – Dzeko, Pellegrini, Santon, Fazio and Kumbulla. By this point, 11 first team players in total had tested positive for the virus at some point: Mirante, Peres, Santon, Fazio, Kumbulla, Calafiori, Diawara, Pellegrini, Perez, Kluivert and Dzeko.

Amadou Diawara returns to training

While all the focus about Diawara was on the unsucessful outcome of Roma’s appeal against their punishment for including him in the wrong squad list at the start of the season, the midfielder brought some good news by returning to training after his recovery. The attention immediately turned to being available for Roma’s first game back from the international break, against Parma 11 days later.

11 November, 2020
11 November, 2020

Roma players blocked from international break

Despite the rest of the squad testing negative, local health authorities took the decision to ban Roma players from travelling to their countries for the international break. That meant the likes of Gianluca Mancini and Bryan Cristante (Italy) and Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Armenia) stayed in Rome.

Riccardo Calafiori returns to training

As Roma continued training during the international break, Calafiori was also able to return to the group after recovering from the virus.

12 November, 2020
13 November, 2020

Kaja Erzen tests negative

There was a welcome boost for Roma Women when Erzen recovered from the virus. She was still in Slovenia, so did not return to Italy in time to play against Milan, but will be able to link up with her teammates again.

Nicola Zalewski tests positive

While the remainder of the first team squad stayed at Trigoria, another Primavera player on the cusp of a breakthrough tested positive. Young forward Nicola Zalewski announced he was asymptomatic on November 14th, but had to self-isolate as a precaution.

14 November, 2020
20 November, 2020

Pellegrini tests negative

As Roma prepared to come back from the international break, some good news arrived from Lorenzo Pellegrini. The midfielder tested negative again, meaning he could focus on getting back on the pitch. He did not clarify if he would be available for the first game back against Parma. However, Edin Dzeko, Marash Kumbulla, Federico Fazio and Davide Santon all remained out.

Dzeko tests negative

After missing the first game back from the break, Edin Dzeko gave Roma another boost by confirming he had recovered from the virus one day after that match.

23 November, 2020
25 November, 2020

Federico Fazio and Davide Santon test negative

The next players to recover were Federico Fazio and Davide Santon. The defenders tested negative one day before Roma’s Europa League game against Cluj. It was too early for them to make that game, leaving Roma with a crisis in defence, but they would return for the following matches.

Marash Kumbulla tests negative

The defence received a further boost when Marash Kumbulla’s period of isolation ended after a negative test.

30 November, 2020
1 December, 2020

Pietro Boer tests negative

The next player to make his recovery from the virus was young goalkeeper Pietro Boer.

Campionato Primavera postponement extends

One day before the suspension of the Campionato Primavera was due to lapse, it was announced that the under-19 league would remain on pause until January 10th, 2021. Like the original postponement, this also affected Primavera cup games.

2 December, 2020
7 December, 2020

Nicola Zalewski tests negative

Roma were back to a clean bill of health – at least on the Covid-19 front – when Zalewski recovered in the second week of December. The winger was able to re-join the senior squad.

Tiago Pinto tests positive

Roma recently confirmed the appointment of Tiago Pinto as their new general manager. He was due to start work from January 1st, 2021, but his arrival in Rome had to wait a few days after he tested positive for the virus.

22 December, 2020
18 January, 2021

Nicolo Zaniolo tests positive

The first Roma player to test positive for coronavirus in 2021 was Nicolo Zaniolo. Working his way back from injury at the time, he did not report any symptoms, but would have to stay away from Trigoria for the time being.

Stephan El Shaarawy tests positive

On January 22nd, reports emerged that Stephan El Shaarawy had agreed a deal to rejoin Roma, and was due for a medical the next day. However, like Pinto’s arrival, that had to wait, as he tested positive for the virus upon his return to Italy. He was eventually able to sign for the club on January 30th.

23 January, 2021
8 February, 2021

Nicolo Zaniolo tests negative

Roma returned to a clean bill of health on the Covid-19 front when Nicolo Zaniolo’s period of isolation ended on February 8th, allowing him to step up his recovery from his ACL injury.

Juan Jesus enters isolation

As Roma prepared to face Fiorentina on March 3rd, Juan Jesus had to leave the travelling party after being in contact with someone who had tested positive for Covid-19. The defender entered isolation, but the whole squad tested negative and the game could go ahead.

3 March, 2021
10 March, 2021

Juan Jesus tests positive

One week after being in contact with someone who had tested positive, Jesus himself returned a positive test – thus keeping him out of action for even longer.

Juan Jesus tests negative

Jesus returned to full health during the March international break.

30 March, 2021
22 July, 2021

Italy introduces green pass system

As the public began to think about their hopes of returning to stadiums, the Italian authorities announced the introduction of the green pass system, which means people will only be able to enter stadiums if they are vaccinated or have had a negative test within 48 hours. Some of Roma’s first pre-season friendlies for 2021 were open to reduced capacity crowds.

Paloma Lazaro tests positive

Just as it seemed the sporting world was beginning to put Covid behind in the rear-view mirror – even if the world as a whole hasn’t – a case struck a Roma player just as pre-season was about to commence. Paloma Lazaro was forced to miss the first Roma Women training camp under new coach Alessandro Spugna as a result of a positive test. She recovered in time to play in a friendly against Atletico Madrid on August 20th.

23 July, 2021
23 July, 2021

All players but one vaccinated

As the authorities stepped up their efforts to vaccinate the population to ensure a safe return to football and general life, it was revealed by Pagine Romaniste that all but one of the players in the Roma squad had had at least one dose of a vaccine. The one who has not was not named, but is expected to at a later date.

Fans return to Serie A stadia

The beginning of the new season also marked the return of fans to stadia. Although not at full capacity due to some restrictions remaining, Roma were able to welcome a significant portion of fans back for their season opener against Fiorentina. The allocation of tickets was at 28,000, with up to 3,000 guests.

22 August, 2021
22 November, 2021

Alice Corelli and Elisa Bartoli test positive

The next Roma player to test positive for Covid-19 was young women’s player Alice Corelli after molecular testing. On the same day, Elisa Bartoli tested positive on international duty.

Villar and Cristante test positive

Roma’s match preparations were disrupted when they announced that midfield duo Bryan Cristante and Gonzalo Villar had both tested positive for the virus despite both being vaccinated.

20 November, 2021
23 November, 2021

Giada Greggi tests positive

One day after her club captain, Giada Greggi also had to withdraw from Italy duty after a positive test.

Bryan Cristante tests negative

On the eve of Roma’s game against Bologna at the start of December, midfielder Cristante – who had not shown symptoms – returned a negative test. Therefore, he became available for selection again.

30 November, 2021
30 November, 2021

Felix Afena-Gyan tests positive

One of Roma’s breakout stars of recent weeks, Felix Afena-Gyan saw his progress put on hold when he tested positive at the end of November. The club confirmed he had been vaccinated.

Villar tests negative

Despite testing positive at the same time as Bryan Cristante, it took Gonzalo Villar a few more days to recover. He got the all clear on the eve of a match against Inter.

3 December 2021
2 December, 2021

Roma Women trio test positive

Three positive cases among the Roma Women group were announced at once on December 2nd. Valeria Pirone, Benedetta Glionna and Angelica Soffia, all vaccinated, all returned positive tests.

Roma Women trio test negative

The three Roma Women players who had tested positive a few days earlier – Soffia, Glionna and Pirone – all returned negative tests in time to join the group for their game away at Sampdoria.

5 December, 2021
10 December 2021

Felix Afena-Gyan tests negative

Felix Afena-Gyan confirmed via his Twitter account that he had tested negative again on December 10th, a few days before Roma’s next game. It meant the first-team squad had a clean bill of health again.

Roma Women trio test negative

Alice Corelli, Lucia Di Guglielmo and Giada Greggi all tested negative on the same day as Roma Women’s outbreak became more under control.

10 December 2021
11 December, 2021

Elisa Bartoli tests negative

Roma Women captain Elisa Bartoli tested negative on December 11th, just in time to be called up for the first ever women’s Derby Della Capitale the day after.

Nine positive Primavera cases

Roma’s under-19s match against Genoa was postponed after an outbreak in the group. Nine positive cases were found, although all those affected were fine. None were in training with the squad for the week.

22 December, 2021
29 December, 2021

Elena Linari tests positive

During the winter break, there was another positive case for a Roma Women player. Elena Linari, who has been vaccinated and is feeling fine, was the one in question.

Two players test positive

As the Roma first-team squad began to report back from the winter break, two positive cases were detected from molecular testing. Borja Mayoral, who was already isolating due to a close contact, later confirmed he was one of those affected.

2 January, 2022
3 January, 2022

Daniel Fuzato tests positive

There became a third case in the Roma first-team when Daniel Fuzato – not identified by the club’s official statement, but by other journalists and then the goalkeeper himself – tested positive. He has been vaccinated and is doing fine.

Primavera postponements

As reported by SportItalia, the 15th matchday of the Primavera championship, plus the Coppa Italia quarter-final in which Roma should play Juventus, were postponed due to Covid-19.

3 January, 2022
3 January, 2022

Stadium capacities reduce

Ahead of their return to action after the winter break, Roma released a ticketing update in light of the news that stadium capacities in Italy have been reduced to 50% again.

Three Roma Women staff test positive

Preparations for the Supercoppa Italiana Femminile were further disrupted when three members of Roma Women staff tested positive. All went into isolation, thus missing the competition.

3 January, 2022
5 January, 2022

Chris Smalling agrees to be vaccinated

As Serie A tightened the rules surrounding players getting vaccinated, there had been murmurings of one player being against the jab at Roma for a while. It was thought to be Chris Smalling, which later became clear. However, one day before the return from the winter break, Sky Sports News confirmed the English defender had changed his stance and agreed to be vaccinated so he can continue playing in a safe manner.

Alessandro Spugna tests positive

A couple of days after Roma Women’s Supercoppa Italiana loss to Milan, and with a few other staff members already isolating, head coach Alessandro Spugna tested positive.

7 January, 2022
9 January, 2022

Nicolo Zaniolo misses Juventus match

Ahead of the match between Roma and Juventus, one more suspected positive Covid-19 case emerged in the Giallorossi camp. The player was not named, but given the absence of Nicolo Zaniolo from the matchday squad, it could be assumed to be him.

Four more positive Roma Women cases

The number of cases engulfing the Roma Women group increased when Camelia Ceasar, Joyce Borini, Angelica Soffia and Vanessa Bernauer were confirmed as being positive for the virus.

10 January, 2022
11 January, 2022

Zaniolo and Fuzato test negative as another tests positive

Two of the positive members of the Roma squad recovered from the virus on January 11th, Nicolo Zaniolo and Daniel Fuzato. Meanwhile, another anonymous player tested positive.

Andressa among positive Roma Women trio

Three more Roma Women players returned positive tests: Andressa Alves, Benedetta Glionna and Valeria Pirone.

12 January, 2022
12 January, 2022

Elena Linari tests negative

While several of her Roma Women teammates were affected by the virus, Elena Linari returned to availability after a negative test.

First-team player tests positive

Roma confirmed another positive case in the first-team squad, although the player’s identity was not immediately disclosed.

12 January, 2022
15 January, 2022

Alessandro Spugna recovers

While several of his players were sidelined with the virus, Roma Women coach Alessandro Spugna returned in time to lead the team in their win over Empoli. However, he could not do so from the dugout; assistant coach Leonardo Montesano oversaw proceedings from the touchline.

Reduced capacities return into force

New guidelines for stadium attendances came into force for at least the next two Serie A matchdays. Consequently, only 5,000 people could attend Roma’s win over Cagliari.

16 January, 2022
16 January, 2022

Ebrima Darboe tests positive

While away at the African Cup of Nations with Gambia, Roma midfielder Ebrima Darboe announced he had tested positive for the virus. He was asymptomatic.

Ebrima Darboe tests negative

Darboe subsequently returned a negative test three days later.

19 January, 2022
20 January, 2022

Thaisa Moreno tests positive

Another Roma Women player tested positive for the virus in mid-January, with midfielder Thaisa Moreno the latest to be affected.

Roma Women trio test negative

After negotiating one match without their first-choice goalkeeper in Serie A Femminile, Roma Women recovered the services of Camelia Ceasar after a negative test. Later that day, forwards Andressa Alves and Benedetta Glionna also recovered.

20 January, 2022
18 February, 2022

Four first-team players test positive

On the eve of Roma’s game against Verona – which would have been permitted to return to a 75% capacity stadium, although the club chose to wait until their next home game on 5th March – it was announced that four players had tested positive with mild symptoms. They all went into isolation as per the appropriate protocols.

Alberto De Rossi tests positive

Roma Primavera head coach Alberto De Rossi tested positive for the virus in mid-March, but recovered by April.

14 March, 2022
25 March, 2022

Annamaria Serturini tests positive

While closing in on her 100th appearance for Roma Women, Annamaria Serturini was made to wait a little longer. A positive test for the virus, despite three vaccines, pushed back the time in which she could make the three additional games needed to reach the century. She recovered by April 3rd, but not in time to play on that day.

Stadio Olimpico cleared for full capacity

During the international break, news arrived that Roma would be able to host games at Stadio Olimpico with 100% capacity crowds again upon its resumption.

25 March, 2022
28 March, 2022

First-team player tests positive

A fully vaccinated member of the Roma squad, not initially identified, tested positive midway through the March 2022 international break. It was believed to be Jordan Veretout.

Stadio Tre Fontane back to 100% capacity

Ahead of Roma Women’s game against Hellas Verona on April 3rd, the club learned they could now host games at 100% capacity at their Stadio Tre Fontane home again.

30 March, 2022

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