Italy Says Sporting Events Closed to Fans Until April 3 Due to Coronavirus Fears

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistMarch 4, 2020

MILAN, ITALY - JANUARY 13:  General view of the San Siro Stadium empty (the fans of Internazionale are disqualificatio for racist shouts) prior to the Coppa Italia match between FC Internazionale v Benevento Calcio at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on January 13, 2019 in Milan, Italy.  (Photo by Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images)
Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images

All sporting events in Italy will be played behind closed doors until April 3 as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. 

As Football Italia relayed, a governmental decree set out the ruling, which will be enforced across the entire country. The motion also places an onus on sporting clubs to carry out checks that ensure none of their athletes have contracted the respiratory virus.

Per Football Italia, there have been in excess of 3,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Italy already. 

Italy has had the most serious outbreak of the coronavirus in Europe, with 107 people confirmed to have died after being infected.

It was also confirmed on Wednesday that all schools in Italy will be shut for a period of 10 days, as the nation seeks to contain the spread of the virus, per BBC. Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte added the country's health service is struggling to cope with the number of cases.

As BBC noted, the majority of the cases in Italy have been discovered in the north of the country, although 19 of the nation's regions have confirmed positive tests.

In Serie A, which is Italy's top-flight football division, there has been severe disruption to fixtures.

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On Sunday, it was confirmed that all matches being played in the Italian regions most significantly affected by the virus would be suspended until March 8. That was after six matches from the previous weekend and four from the weekend before that were called off.

Per Gazzetta dello Sport (h/t the Guardian), Inter Milan chief executive Giuseppe Marotta said he feared the 2019-20 season could not be concluded if more matches are postponed.