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    Coronavirus: Ligue 1 matches will go ahead, says Sport Minister

    Football   |   March 4, 2020

    Ligue 1 games will go ahead at the weekend as scheduled by the football federation.

    It was disclosed by the French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu at a press conference on Tuesday.

    While declaring that Ligue 1 games will not be affected by measures to combat the coronavirus, which has left over 3000 dead globally, she, however, said that that UEFA Champions League matches could be affected.

    The return leg of the Paris Saint-Germain against Borrusia Dortmund could be postponed or played behind closed doors. Inter Milan’s clash against Lodogoret in the Europa League had to be played behind closed doors at the San Siro to contain the spread of the deadly virus.

    Speaking on the measures taken by her ministry to protect the French public from the spread of the deadly coronavirus, Maracineanu said the reason for the decision was because the majority of the spectators will be coming from local areas where there have been no outbreaks of the disease.

    Other sports, which include  Rugby and cycling, also got the nod, but continental football competition could be affected. Fans usually travel far greater distances than domestic leagues, which the governing body is yet to comment on.

    FIFA President had some days ago said the friendly games slated for the end of the month might be canceled if there is no reduction in the spread of the virus.

    Speaking on Paris Saint-Germain’s all-important UEFA Champions League last 16 return leg at home to Dortmund on March 11, Maracineanu said the match would “at least take place,” adding that it is for UEFA to decide if the match would be played behind closed doors or not.

    She also pointed out that with the current realities, it’s too early to decide on the game.

    With the Serie A games postponed in some part of Italy, the spread of the deadly virus which has left over five people dead in the country could also affect Olympique Lyonnais Juventus game.

    The Ligue 1 side will be defending their 1-0 aggregate lead over the Turin giants when they travel to Italy for the second leg of their UEFA Champions League last 16 tie, which holds on Tuesday, March 17.



    Written by:  Oladipupo Mojeed


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