Football: Spain lifts national restrictions on stadium attendance

Spanish football clubs will be allowed to open their stadiums up to 100 percent capacity. PHOTO: REUTERS

MADRID (AFP) - Spanish football clubs will be allowed to open their stadiums up to 100 per cent capacity from this weekend after national restrictions brought in to combat the Covid-19 pandemic were lifted on Wednesday (Sept 29).

Local restrictions, however, remain in place which is likely to prevent cash-strapped Barcelona from throwing their doors fully open just yet.

The Spanish Inter-Territorial Council (CISNS), the body that brings together political leaders in charge of health from all regions of Spain, set the attendance limits for La Liga football, basketball "and other sporting events up to 100 per cent outdoors, and 80 per cent indoors", it said in a statement.

The measures will run until the end of October when they will be re-assessed.

However, other measures, such as the obligation to wear a mask and to respect a distance of 1.5m between each person, have been kept in place which logically compromises the notion of matches taking place in full stadiums.

The application of this easing will depend on the health authorities of each autonomous region of Spain giving their consent.

Catalonia, the home of Barcelona and Espanyol, announced Wednesday that it will keep its attendance limit of 60 per cent in open-air stadiums of more than 10,000 people.

The Basque Country, which has three La Liga clubs in Athletic Bilbao, Alaves and Real Sociedad, also announced Wednesday that it will keep its current attendance limit of 60 per cent.

Spain was hard hit in the early months of the pandemic and more than 86,000 people have died of Covid-19.

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