By Cathy Elelman • 03 June 2020 • 10:40
SPAIN’S Health Ministry has not completely ruled out allowing football fans back into stadiums during lockdown Phase three to watch matches when La Liga kicks off again next week.
At a press briefing on Tuesday, Health Emergency Coordinator Fernando Simon said the issue is being looked at, but also made the point it would be “unfair” if not all football grounds could open their doors to supporters.
Simon’s comments came a day after the president of UD Las Palmas said talks were underway about reopening the Gran Canaria club’s stadium to spectators as early as June 13 for a match against Girona.
Judging by what Simon said this is not guaranteed.
Referring to a videoconference meeting yesterday between Health Minister Salvador Illa, Sports Minister Irene Lozano and Spanish Premier League players, he said the view of the National Sports Council and the footballers was that matches should be behind closed doors until all clubs can open their stadiums.
“We have been discussing some concerns and certain key aspects like the presence or not of the public on the terraces. There has been no definitive answer, obviously because it’s not possible right now,” he explained.
“But it is true that the ministry has promised to evaluate the risks. And if a region is in Phase three it will be evaluated.”
At the same time he underlined the effect on players of having their fans cheering them on and the “influence of the public” on how matches go, and said that for the sake of sporting fairness stadium doors should remain shut unless there could be supporters at all grounds.
“This is what the Sports Council and the players have established,” he stressed.
“It has not come from the ministry because while we know about the ground factor, it is not one of the criteria which we have in our heads when evaluating the risks.
“Therefore the option is there. No decision has been finalised, but depending on the evolution of the epidemic and how the autonomous communities are in Phase three, it could be proposed.”
La Liga matches are scheduled to start up again next Thursday June 11 with a Sevilla-Betis derby after a three-month suspension due to the coronavirus crisis.
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Cathy Elelman is the local writer for the Costa de Almeria edition of the Euro Weekly News.
Based in Mojacar for the last 21 years, Cathy is very much part of the local community and is always well and truly up on all the latest news and events going on in this region of Spain.
Her top goals are to do the best job she can informing the local English-speaking community, visitors to the area and the wider world about about the news in Almeria, to learn something new every day, and to embrace very new challenge this fast-changing world brings her way.
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