Health minister wants Valencia-Atalanta, Getafe-Inter behind closed doors

3.3.2020 19:46

Spain health minister Salvador Illa recommended Tuesday that due to the coronavirus outbreak, Valencia's Champions League home tie with Atalanta and Getafe's Europa League visit from Inter Milan should be played behind closed doors, according to Reuters.

The second leg between Barcelona and Napoli in the Champions League and the opening fixture between Sevilla and Roma in the Europa League round of 16 were not specifically identified by Illa.

"Valencia's basketball clash with Olimpia Milano on March 5, the match between Valencia and Atalanta on March 10, Getafe versus Inter on March 19, and Girona versus Venezia on the same day, which is a women's basketball match," Illa said, as quoted by ESPN.

"These four matches plus any more which could materialize and fit this category will be behind closed doors. It is a congruent measure which the health authorities from other countries - including the north of Italy - have dictated. All the sporting events which include teams from zones considered a risk will be played behind closed doors."

There are over 110 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Spain, which announced the country's first death on Tuesday, according to the Independent's Vincent Wood.

The European nation worst affected by the outbreak has been Italy, with The Guardian's Lorenzo Tondo and Angela Giuffrida believing more than 2,500 people have tested positive for the virus. So far, 10 Serie A matches have been postponed, two of which involved title-chasing Inter.

"Inter already have two matches postponed, and they still play in the Italian Cup and the Europa League, so this makes it almost impossible to find dates if we don't coordinate between the European leagues," UEFA general secretary Theodore Theodoridis said earlier on Tuesday.

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