Spanish authorities confirmed this morning that La Liga will be played behind closed doors for the next two weeks, leaving only Germany and England from Europe’s big five leagues permitting spectators. Yesterday the Italian government banned all domestic sporting fixtures until 3 April, meaning Serie A games will not take place, even behind closed doors.
Authorities in Germany and the UK will now come under pressure, especially as leagues in Germany and England attract he highest attendances in the world. The next move is likely to be in Germany, where the confirmed case number is similar to that in Spain and France.
Case numbers in the UK are a quarter those in Germany, France and Spain, there are still only 321 cases here, but if we follow a similar pattern, that figure will be over 1,000 by the weekend, when we can expect non-essential gatherings to be prohibited. A ban is in the post.
The Cheltenham Festival runs from today until Friday. The cynic in you might suggest a ban on sporting events will take place after the last of the Prosecco is supped in Gloucestershire. I hope we do not see the now-annual player photos from the Festival…