Government Recommends Barcelona vs Napoli to Be Played Behind Closed Doors Due to Coronavirus Fears

?The Spanish government have recommended that Barcelona’s second leg against Napoli in the last 16 of the Champions League should be played behind closed doors.

It’s still all to play for after Barcelona were held to a 1-1 draw at the Stadio San Paolo, where Belgium international Dries Mertens became Napoli’s all-time leading goalscorer before Antoine Griezmann scored a vital away goal.

But the return leg is now under threat of being played behind closed doors, with the Spanish government looking to take precautionary measures following the coronavirus outbreak.

SSC Napoli v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

Onda Cero Radio commentator Alfredo Martinez confirmed the recommendation from the Spanish government on social media. 

Forbes report Salvador Illa, Spain’s minister of health, has officially announced that Valencia’s match against Atalanta, as well as Getafe’s against Inter in the Europa League, will be played behind closed doors.

It still remains to be seen if Barcelona’s home match against Napoli, which is due to be played on March 18, will be added to the list of sporting events which are being played without supporters.

A handful of games in Serie A have already had to be postponed following the coronavirus outbreak, including most recently Inter’s top of the table clash against Juventus.

Milan vs Genoa, Parma vs SPAL, Udinese vs Fiorentina and Sassuolo vs Brescia were also suspended at the last minute during the last round of games in Italy.

More games across Europe are expected to undergo similar restrictions as the Coronavirus continues to spread across the continent.

AFC Bournemouth v Aston Villa - Premier League

The Premier League’s decision-makers are already discussing a possible contingency plan which could see top-flight games played behind closed doors or even postponed until the Coronavirus outbreak becomes more manageable.


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