Arizona to host tournament with 500 youth teams amid COVID-19

Hundreds of kids are expected to attend a soccer tournament in Arizona that’s hosting 500 teams amid the ongoing pandemic.

The annual Desert Super Cup is being held over the Thanksgiving weekend in Phoenix where the soccer teams, in-state and out of state, are participating, CNN reported Wednesday.

Will Humble, executive director of the Arizona Public Health Association, called the timing of the tournament “foolish.”

“It’s incredibly bad timing. I can’t think of a worse time to do something like this. What is so foolish about this is that we are now in exponential growth of the virus,” Humble told the Washington Post. “I don’t understand why city staff would approve something like that given the circumstances that we’re in.”

The games also will be held in Mesa and Scottsdale. Players, spectators and coaches are expected to follow strict guidelines such as socially distancing and doing a self-temperature check before arriving to the sports facilities, according to FOX10.

The Phoenix City Council hasn’t canceled the tournament even though it has the power to do.

“Absolutely fantastic news,” councilmember Sal DiCicco tweeted Tuesday. “The 800 kid soccer tournament will still be held in Phoenix this coming weekend. They are coming here because they had been banned everywhere else and we have amazing facilities. We welcome you and your families to our great city!”

Arizona has seen more than 300,000 coronavirus cases. The Arizona Department of Health said there were an additional 3,982 cases and 9 deaths as of Wednesday.