Italian Government Considering Halting Serie A for 30 Days Due to Coronavirus

The ?Italian government has advised that Serie A should be stopped for the next 30 days amid concerns about the impact of coronavirus in Italy.

The virus has already hampered sporting events worldwide, and Italy’s football league has been hit significantly since the outbreak in the north of the country, which has resulted in several Serie A games being postponed and played behind closed doors.

A tweet published by Sky Sport Italia, ?quoting ansa.it, suggests that the Scientific Technical Committee, along with Italian government officials and Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, have proposed that all public events in Italy should be avoided and subsequently halted for the next 30 days, including football.

This would mean that Serie A, which already has a number of fixtures to be rescheduled following the initial impact of the coronavirus, could have to deal with an entire month of fixtures being postponed, which would be incredibly difficult to reschedule, considering the league is currently at game week 26 of 38 and Euro 2020 scheduled for the summer.

The Italian government has currently suspended play in affected regions of the country until 8 March, which means the following fixtures are set to be affected this coming weekend: Atalanta v Lazio, Bologna v Juventus, Internazionale v Sassuolo, and Hellas Verona v Napoli.

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With so many games being postponed, the risk of the season coming to a close prematurely is increasing. Speaking to Gazetta dello Sport,? as quoted by The Guardian, Inter chief executive Giuseppe Marotta confirmed the possibilities: “If more matches are called off then, yes, we run that risk.”

He also discussed the impact it has had on teams’ performances, saying: “It’s a distorted tournament. You just need to think of injuries and suspensions. And there is the psychological aspect when you look at the standings.”

Coronavirus has caused problems worldwide, and has had a significant impact on Italy as a country. ?According to Al Jazeera, Italy’s death toll due to the coronavirus has reached 79 at the time of writing, announced by the head of Italy’s civil protection agency.

In the context of Serie A, Lazio currently sit in first place on 62 points having played 26 matches. ?Juventus sit in second with one game in hand on 60 points, while third-placed ?Inter Milan have two games in hand on the league leaders, and sit on 54 points. At this point it remains to be seen whether the league season is completed.

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