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Football Reporting


Premier League could welcome back supporters for final matchday in May

Supporters could be allowed inside stadiums to watch the final round of Premier League fixtures on May 23 after the UK government confirmed plans for outdoor events impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic to resume on May 17.

The Carabao Cup final between Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley on April 26 could also see a small number of paying spectators in attendance if the game is selected to be a test event, which have been authorised to go ahead from April 12.

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Aside from a three-week period in December, when Premier League clubs located in areas of low infection rate were able to allow 2,000 fans inside for games, top-flight grounds have been closed to supporters since the UK went into its first COVID-19 lockdown in March 2020.

But on Monday, prime minister Boris Johnson confirmed that sporting events will once again be opened up to spectators from mid-May, subject to the infection rate continuing to subside sufficiently during the weeks ahead.

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Should the May 17 date go ahead as anticipated, Premier League clubs will be allowed to open up for a maximum of 10,000 fans or 25% of capacity, whichever is the lowest figure.

If fans are inside stadiums for the final round of fixtures, it will enable the Premier League trophy to be presented to the champions in front of supporters. Last season, Liverpool were forced to lift the trophy inside an empty Anfield.

The decision to unlock sports stadiums from May 17 is also a boost for the delayed UEFA Euro 2020 tournament, which is due to take place in June and July.

England is due to host seven Euro 2020 games at Wembley, including both semifinals at the final, with Hampden Park, Glasgow, also scheduled to stage three group games and a round of 16 tie.

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