The Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) has provided an update on the country's senior women's national team in Santiago, where they have been placed in quarantine.
The Southern Africa side arrived in the Chilean capital last Wednesday for two international friendlies with La Roja in preparation for the upcoming Olympic Games in Tokyo next year.
And the Copper Queens had faced off with the Chileans last Saturday in Santiago, where they came from behind to earn a 2-1 win through goals from Barbara Banda and Racheal Nachula.
They were expected to play the second match against their hosts on Tuesday, December 1, when at least four players were initially tested positive for coronavirus before three more tested positive.
The development just hours prior to kick-off forced the cancellation of the game and also resulted in the confinement of the team to 14 days in isolation at Torremayor Hotel in Santiago by local authorities.
“Individuals with confirmed cases of Covid-19 would typically complete isolation for 11 days inside the sanitary residence, until December 12, 2020," the FAZ statement read on Friday.
"However, to keep the delegation together during their stay in Chile, the decision was made to extend the isolation of all members of the team until December 15, 2020."
Commenting on the situation, FAZ deputy general secretary Joseph Chimpampwe shared details of the efforts made to ensure the delegation's safety.
“On our part, we are in touch with our team and the Chilean Football Federation on the developments in Santiago," he said.
"This is part of the challenges posed by the ‘New Normal’, but we are doing everything possible to ensure that our team returns safely after completing the health protocols.
“For avoidance of doubt, the team was tested prior to their departure for Chile as per requirement for travellers under the new normal and underwent Covid-19 tests upon entry into Santiago which came out negative.
"The situation is part of what we have to endure under the Covid-19 crisis that the world is battling with.”
At it stands, hopes of Zaragoza having Nachula and Hellen Mubanga back before December 15 hangs by a thread, the same as Mary Mwakapila joining Hapoel Beer Sheva for the Israeli league's opener.