Edgar Castillo training during preseason at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., on Tuesday, January 21, 2020. (Photo by Jacob Gonzalez/Atlanta United)
Photo: Jacob Gonzalez/Atlanta United
Photo: Jacob Gonzalez/Atlanta United

MLS allows small-group training

In another small step toward possibly restarting its season, MLS said Thursday that voluntary small-group training sessions can begin.

The small groups must maintain social distance and follow prescribed protocols established by the league. The protocols are similar to those put forth when individual training sessions resumed May 6.

The league suspended its season March 12 because of concerns about COVID-19.

In the individual sessions, the fields are quartered with each player training in a quadrant. In the group sessions, the fields may be halved, with six zones spaced at least 10 feet apart in each half. Each zone can have a maximum of one player. There can be a maximum of six players on one half of a field.

Players can switch zones only if another player isn’t in that zone and the players maintain a 10-foot distance.

Players may pass the ball and shoot on goal as long they are 10 feet apart.

Coaches and technical staff must wear a face mask at all times and may direct players from the perimeter of the field. They can’t enter the field and must also stay at least 10 feet from each other and the players.

Goalkeepers may not spit on their gloves and must clean, disinfect and sanitize their gloves after each training.

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