Messi to miss another Paris Saint-Germain game recovering from COVID-19

The latest sports news:

  • Messi to miss another game for Paris Saint-Germain
  • Alphonso Davies deals with heart muscle issue after COVID
  • Maple Leafs add trio to protocol
  • CHL postpones Top Prospects Game
  • QMJHL postpones return to play
  • Shortage of Burnley players leads to match against Leicester being called off

Lionel Messi will miss another game for Paris Saint-Germain after acknowledging that his recovery from COVID-19 has been slower than expected.

The Argentina forward won’t be available for Saturday’s game against Brest at Parc des Princes, PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino said Friday.

The 34-year-old Messi missed PSG’s 1-1 draw at Lyon last Sunday when the French league returned from its winter break. Messi had become infected while home in Argentina. He later tested negative and returned to Paris.

Messi said in a social media post on Thursday that “it has taken me more time than I had expected to get better” but that he’s “almost recovered” and eager to get back on the field.

“I have been training these days to get back to 100 per cent,” he wrote on Instagram. “There are some very exciting challenges ahead this year and I hope that we can all see one another again very soon.”

Pochettino said Messi remains under the supervision of the team’s medical staff. The club said Friday that Messi “will gradually rejoin the squad next week.”

After this weekend, league-leader PSG hosts Reims on Jan. 23 before the international break.

Neymar remains out because of an ankle injury he picked up in late November and wasn’t included in the Brazil squad announced Thursday for World Cup qualifying.

Argentina and Brazil have already qualified for the World Cup.

Davies has heart muscle issue after bout with COVID-19

Alphonso Davies’s return from a bout of COVID-19 has been put on hold with Bayern Munich saying the Canadian soccer star shows signs of an inflammation of the heart muscle.

The 21-year-old from Edmonton has been sidelined, with his participation in doubt for Canada’s World Cup qualifiers later this month.

Bayern manager Julian Nagelsmann told a pre-match news conference Friday that the problem was detected in the follow-up examination that all players who have had COVID undergo.

Read more about Davies’ outlook here.

3 more Maple Leafs in protocol

The Toronto Maple Leafs added three more players to the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol as an outbreak on the team that started in December continues to drag on.

The Leafs announced Friday that forwards Ondrej Kase and Nick Ritchie and defenceman Justin Holl have been added to the list.

The announcement comes two days after the Maple Leafs dropped a 2-1 road decision to the Arizona Coyotes, who are in the midst of a COVID-19 outbreak.

A total of 20 Maple Leaf players have entered the protocol since the team struggled through its outbreak last month.

Most of the players have since returned to action. Wingers Mitch Marner and Pierre Engvall, who entered protocol seven days ago, were the only other Maple Leafs out due to coronavirus concerns Friday morning.

The Maple Leafs practiced in Arizona on Friday before their upcoming game in St. Louis on Saturday.

CHL postpones Top Prospects Game

The Canadian Hockey League has postponed the 2022 CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game due to COVID-19 concerns.

The game was originally scheduled to be held Feb. 2 at Kitchener Memorial Auditorium, home of the Ontario Hockey League’s Rangers.

The CHL said in a statement Friday that a new date for the game will be announced at a later time.

The announcement comes as complications due to the highly transmissible Omicron variant has led to the postponement of several OHL games. The league has postponed 57 games so far this season, though some of those dates have since been rescheduled.

The CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game is a showcase of NHL draft-eligible talent from the OHL, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and Western Hockey League — the three major junior hockey leagues operating under the CHL umbrella.

QMJHL pushes back return to play to Feb. 1

The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League has pushed bask its return to play to Feb. 1 due to ongoing challenges around the COVID-19 pandemic.

The league had originally planned to restart on Monday.

The QMJHL said in a statement that the change to the restart was made because there is no clear timeline of easing COVID-19 restrictions.

Most of the league’s teams operate out of Quebec, where entertainment venues remain closed and a 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew is in force. The curfew is expected too be lifted Monday.

The league said it is still working on rescheduling all postponed games in order to complete a full 68-game schedule.

The league has been on hiatus since Dec. 18.

Burnley match vs Leicester off due to COVID

Burnley’s shortage of players due to coronavirus cases and injuries has led to its Premier League match against Leicester being postponed.

The league accepted Burnley’s case that it didn’t have enough squad members available — 13 outfield players and one goalkeeper — for Saturday’s match.

It is the 20th Premier League game postponed since Dec. 12 due to players having to isolate. Relegation-threatened Burnley has already played three games fewer than last-place Norwich, which is a point behind in last place.

COVID-19 outbreaks continue to impact other teams with Chelsea defender Andreas Christensen ruled out of Saturday’s game at Manchester City while isolating.

City also has new virus cases, though manager Pep Guardiola wouldn’t identify how many or who on Friday.

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