Coronavirus: LaLiga president Tebas hopes to see fans in stadiums before end of the season

By Peter Hanson 12 June 2020 14
Coronavirus: LaLiga president Tebas hopes to see fans in stadiums before end of the season

LaLiga still hopes to have supporters back in stadiums before the end of the season, says president Javier Tebas.

Spain's top flight was returning on Thursday with the Seville derby between Sevilla and Real Betis following a three-month suspension caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The game, behind closed doors at Sevilla's Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan stadium, came as Spain continues to adhere to social distancing measures amid the COVID-19 crisis.

However, Tebas – while ruling out stadiums operating at full capacity – remains optimistic venues will be able to allow some spectators through the doors before the campaign comes to a close.

Speaking to reporters, LaLiga chief Tebas said: "Of course it won't be the entire stadium and there will be special precautionary measures.

"If we can have even 10 per cent or 15 per cent by the end of the season, if that happens we will be very happy about that because that's a sign that we are getting back to some form of normality.

"When we celebrate will be when we actually finish the competitions, both the first division and the second division. This crisis still hasn't come to an end.

"The pandemic is on a sharp decline. The return to stadiums would have to be coordinated by the ministry for health and the Consejo Superior de Deportes [the Sports Council], and it is obviously not going to be the whole stadium."

He added: "It is important that fans start to return."

Tebas again stated the 2020-21 LaLiga campaign will start on September 12, which could cause issues for Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Getafe and Sevilla who are all still in European competitions that are due to be concluded in August.

"If we need to, we will adapt their fixture list, so that their games get played," Tebas added.

"They will start on September 19, September 26, it won't be easy [but] we will look for dates for them to [make up] those matches.

"You can't change things for 20 clubs to suit two; it is much better that those two adapt."

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Peter Hanson