UEFA cancels Norway- Romania match


"The match cannot be played," UEFA announced via its UEFA Nations League website. 

Earlier on Sunday (AEDT), Norway's health minister had ordered the squad not to travel to Romania for Monday's (AEDT) game after full-back Omar Elabdellaoui, who plays for Galatasaray in Turkey, tested positive for COVID-19.

The minister insisted the Norwegian federation respect the country's quarantine rules, which recommend isolation in case of contact with a positive test. 

"If the federation chooses to operate in a legal grey area, and in particular to undermine one of the most important tools at our disposal to deal with the pandemic, which is to quarantine when you have been in contact with an infected person, then I will react strongly," Bent Hoie said on local television.

After the discovery of the positive test, the federation cancelled its departure for Romania but still wanted to obtain the approval of the authorities to leave and play the tie on Monday (AEDT) followed by a final group game against Austria.

Norway shares the lead of its group with Austria.

In a letter to the minister, published on its website, the Norway football federation said it feared "the consequences of not taking part in these matches" if it was forced to withdraw. 

On Thursday (AEDT), a friendly match between Norway and Israel had also been cancelled because of the discovery of a COVID-19 case in the Israeli squad. 

With just more than 27,000 cases and 294 deaths, Norway has escaped the worst of the pandemic in Europe.