HomeFootballLa Liga: Spain mulls return of fans to matches

La Liga: Spain mulls return of fans to matches

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According to Health Emergency Coordinator Fernando Simon, Spain’s health ministry is weighing up whether to let supporters back into soccer stadiums when La Liga season restarts later in June after a three-month long pause due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Simon explained that regions which had moved into phase three of the de-escalation process could be authorised to hold matches with spectators but added that they might be prevented from doing so in the interest of sporting fairness.

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Return of fans

Second-tier Las Palmas have started a discussion about fans returning after their president Miguel Angel Ramirez said he hoped fans could attend their first match back against Girona.

Simon said the issue was discussed on Tuesday in an online meeting between Health Minister Salvador Illa, Sports Minister Irene Lozano and four La Liga players including Barcelona’s Gerard Pique and Atletico Madrid’s Koke.

The players and the department for sport do not want supporters at matches until every club is allowed to have them back.

“The department for sport have agreed this with the players. That decision did not come from the health department as it’s not something we considered when evaluating the risks,” Simon said.

“We haven’t given any firm answer as we are obviously not in a position to do so yet but it is true that the health minister has committed to evaluating the risks. And if a region is in phase three (fans attending matches) will be evaluated.”

After 3 months of lockdown due to the outbreak of corona virus, Spain, one of the countries in Europe worst-affected by the virus has been easing restrictions according to progress made in each region.

The majority of provinces are expected to move into phase three from 8 June, with the exception of the region of Madrid, the province of Barcelona and some provinces in Castille Leon.

Federation wants to show its good will

La Liga President Javier Tebas has said the organisation is planning for return of fans to stadiums in stages next season, which is due to begin on 12 September, as long as they get the green light from health authorities.

Spain wants to be seen as a model on how to organize sports events after the pandemic.

The federation said it “wants to clearly show its good will” and is also willing to extend the exception into the beginning of next season depending on how the pandemic progresses and if games will continue to be played without fans.

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