How The Coronavirus Is Affecting European Football
The coronavirus pandemic has created a ripple effect in the world of sports and entertainment with many live events forced into cancellation or banning fans from entering the venue.
Despite formulating in China, the virus quickly spread to Europe which has resulted in Italy becoming the most affected country outside the territory the disease was first located. At the time of writing, over 10,000 cases have been confirmed in Italy with over 600 fatalities.
Cases have continued to rise across Europe and leagues across the continent have responded to varying levels in accordance with their respective central governments.
Below we take a look at current status across Europe’s top leagues.
Given the large number of cases confirmed in the country, all matches have been suspended until April 3rd following a period of playing matches behind closed doors. The order came from the government and what happens beyond that date hasn’t yet been revealed.
2) Portugal, Spain, France, Germany & Greece
Portugal, Spain, France, Germany and Greece have all ordered games to take place behind closed doors or in front of restricted crowds to varying degrees. In Spain, all league games have been ordered to be played behind closed doors while the Copa Del Rey final between Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilboa.
France has placed a cap on the number of people who’re able to attend a match to 1,000 for the next four weeks until April 15th. Meanwhile in Portugal, up to 5,000 supporters can enter the ground to watch a match while the government is also exploring the possibility of playing behind closed doors.
Germany and Greece have also ordered matches to be played behind closed doors.
3) UK, Holland, Belgium, Ireland
It’s business as usual for the countries above although Wednesday’s match between Manchester City and Arsenal had to be postponed due to Olympiacos’ owner announcing that he’s contracted the virus.
We played the Greek champions earlier this month and he was said to have shaken the hand of at least one Arsenal player and come into close proximity with a number of others. It meant that players would have to self-isolate for 14 days following that match which ends tomorrow.