"Playing here today was a shame for all of us."
-- Belenenses president Rui Pedro Soares
after his club's Portuguese league match against Benfica was abandoned early in the second half when it could not continue with the minimum number of seven players. Belenenses was hit with a total of 17 cases of Covid-19 -- 14 players and three staff members -- leaving it with only nine players, two of them goalkeepers, to start the match. Trailing 7-0, Belenenses returned for the second half with only seven players before Joao Monteiro
, a goalkeeper playing in midfield, sat down on the ground unable to continue. Soares was concerned the cases could be related to the new Omicron variant. Defender Cafu Phete
tested positive for Covid-19 after returning to Portugal from international duty in South Africa, where the new variant was first discovered by researchers. (Reuters