The Premier League, the Football Association and the UK government might be a step closer to allowing fans to return to football stadia after Premier League chief executive Richard Masters admitted that the first organised test event was a success.
Brighton hosted Chelsea in a pre-season friendly at the Amex Stadium on Saturday, with 2,524 supporters being allowed to attend the game which ended as a 1-1 draw.
According to Sky Sports, the game was the first football match in the country to allow fans back since the suspension of football due to the coronavirus pandemic back in March.
The match was one of a number of pilot events in the UK across several sports, approved by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport for a phased return of spectators.
Strict social distancing measures were observed at the Amex with hand sanitisation points set up across the stadium, while digital match tickets were scanned for entry into the stadium and cashless transactions used at kiosks.
Masters admitted that the event went as planned and that the authorities are working to have full stadiums back as soon as possible while prioritising fans’ safety.
He is quoted by Sky Sports as saying: “Brighton & Hove Albion did a fantastic job at their test event for the return of supporters and it was great to see fans in a Premier League stadium for the first time since March.
“The success of having 2,500 supporters in the Amex was very encouraging and we are committed to having full stadia as soon as possible, with safety always our priority. We are working hard alongside our clubs, the Government and the safety authorities to achieve this.”
Spurs Web Opinion
With new evidence coming in all the time about the virus’ transmissibility (or lack thereof) and the dropping infection rates, I am hopeful that it will not be too long before fans are allowed back in the Stadia. However, those expecting to see full stadiums back before the end of 2020 will likely be disappointed. We will probably see crowds being slowly phased in over several months.
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