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Tuesday, 22 September 2020

Coronavirus: Plans For Fans to Return to Sport Events in October Called Off

Plans for fans to return to watch live sport events in England from 1 October will not go ahead, says cabinet office minister Michael Gove.

The plans were placed under review earlier this month after a rise in coronavirus cases, with pilot events restricted to 1,000 people.

The UK's Covid-19 alert level has moved to 4, meaning transmission is "high or rising exponentially".

New measures will be set out by Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday.

Speaking to BBC Breakfast, Gove confirmed plans for a staged return of fans would be "paused".

"We were looking at a staged programme of more people returning - it wasn't going to be the case that we were going to have stadiums thronged with fans," he said.

"We're looking at how we can, for the moment, pause that programme, but what we do want to do is to make sure that, as and when circumstances allow, get more people back.

"The virus is less likely to spread outdoors than indoors but again it's in the nature of major sporting events that there's a lot of mingling."

The pilot programme will also be paused.

The majority of sports in England have been played behind closed doors since the coronavirus lockdown in March, including Premier League football, the FA Cup final, England's Test cricket matches and two Formula 1 races at Silverstone.

BBCSport

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