Everton star Alex Iwobi withdrew from the day 5 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Benin Republic after testing positive for Covid-19 in Cotonou last Saturday.
He was due for 14 days self-quarantine after testing positive for the coronavirus but went for another test in Lagos.
On Tuesday, results appeared negative — raising questions about the accuracy of the tests that are being used by professional sports to screen players before big events and games.
We confirmed that a negative Covid-19 test result after an initial positive test could mean one of three things: the person is on the “upswing” of getting sick and has a low viral load, the person is simply a low-load carrier who never develops symptoms or the person is on the “downswing” meaning they’re already recovering from the virus.
There are two reasons for why a false positive case can occur. The first is when there are any cross-reacting substances. If a person is infected with another type of coronavirus, their antibodies can make them look like they have positive Covid-19 antibodies, resulting in a false positive test result.
The second reason is when a person has a very low viral load. When someone is infected with a disease, the virus can still be detected in their specimen for many weeks even after they recover and are no longer contagious.
Iwobi is doubtful for the Super Eagles’ AFCONQ dead rubber match against Lesotho at the Teslim Balogun Stadium on Tuesday. Kickoff is at 5pm local time.