In Europe, Italy is said to be the country with the worst cases of the deadly Coronavirus. It is reported that more than 100 people have died and more than 3,000 have been infected with COVID-19 in the country.
In the bid to prevent the further spread, the Italian government has announced on Wednesday that all sporting events in Italy will take place in ’empty stadiums’ without fans present for at least one month.
All tiers of the Italian football league will resume in full this weekend, however, the football calendar has been pushed back a week.
An Italian Cup semifinal between Juventus and AC Milan scheduled for Wednesday, March 4, 2020, in Turin was also postponed indefinitely as part of measures to stop the further spread of the virus in Italy.
”All sporting events throughout the country must take place without fans present until April 3,” the Italian government decreed.
Crucial games during the period include Juventus’ Champions League game round-of-16 second leg tie against Lyon scheduled for March 17 in Turin. Inter Milan and Roma also have Europa League games scheduled, against Getafe and Sevilla, respectively.
Ireland and Italy’s Six Nations meeting will be impacted, as the decree also calls into concern Italy’s Six Nations rugby match against England in Rome on March 14, The match will either be postponed or go ahead in an empty stadium.
Italy’s match against Ireland, which was scheduled for March 7, has already been postponed.
Also In tennis, Italy is set to play South Korea in a Davis Cup qualifier this weekend in Cagliari, Sardinia, and it will be played behind closed doors.
The Italian soccer league’s governing body is yet to release a revised schedule but reports suggests that the six Serie A matches that were postponed last week will now be played this weekend behind closed doors.