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Some Fans Could Return for Start of New Season
Thursday, 18th Jun 2020 12:14

Culture secretary Oliver Dowden and FA chief executive Mark Bullingham are both hopeful that “some fans” will be able to return to football grounds at the start of the new season, which is currently pencilled in for September.

Speaking at yesterday’s daily Covid-19 briefing, Dowden said: “I would really hope that by the return of the new season we might be in a position whereby some fans could start to return to stadiums.

“I know that would be another important part of restoring the financial position of clubs.”

He added that the “outdoor element” of watching football meant that supporters could be allowed into stadia sooner than audiences are permitted to return to theatres and other indoor venues.

Bullingham told The Guardian that the FA takes a similar view: “When we look ahead to September, we are hoping we are in a very different situation than we are now as a country, and we hope at some point we can start having crowds back.

“We’re looking at loads of options; we’re even getting people to map out what traffic flows [of spectators] look like in stadia, explore what it could look like with one-metre, two-metre social distancing and so on.”

He added that app-based “digital passports” are under consideration, aimed at showing that supporters are not infected with Covid‑19 utilising the Government’s testing programme.

While a September start for 2020/21 is the current target - either behind closed doors or with the hoped-for limited crowd - a number of clubs in Leagues One and Two are understood to want to wait until supporters are able to attend games en masse, which is likely to be in the new year.

Photo: Action Images

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Cloddyseedbed added 12:18 - Jun 18
You never know there might be some benefit to having a season ticket after all!

Bergholt_Blue added 13:44 - Jun 18
This isn't going to go down well
Me personally will want a refund on last year's St and if not allowed in till the new year I want refund on this one too

matthewwylds added 13:52 - Jun 18
If my kids play up at school I’ll be taking them as Punishment they won’t play up again

MickMillsTash added 14:15 - Jun 18
For safety purposes - Can someone calculate how far covid particles can travel when swearing at Luke Chambers after the hot headed blunder he has been promising all game materialises in the last minute?

ArnieM added 14:21 - Jun 18
So what’s the criteria for “ some fans” Being able to attend games , and the rest ?

dirtydingusmagee added 14:30 - Jun 18
another farce,

cooper4england added 14:30 - Jun 18
I can understand social distancing in your seats but how would people pass each other in the aisles? Wearing face coverings perhaps.

dirtydingusmagee added 14:36 - Jun 18
. I dont think social distancing will be much of a problem next season,if the same s##t is served up .I wouldnt risk my life to watch the gutless performances witnessed over past few seasons .

Bert added 15:07 - Jun 18
It is a physically viable option and likely to benefit those who have coughed up money already. That said, the owner must get the refund issue right or he will lose thousands of would be season ticket holders. He needs to take a small hit in his pocket and reduce the price of next season's ticket by the equivalent of the 5 home games already lost or similar. That would be a big incentive to sign up again.

Karlosfandangal added 15:09 - Jun 18
I really don't care. Covid has just highlighted the greed of Prem.

If teams in Div 1 need to play in front of crowds to be able to keep operating yet the Prem get £340 Million to play in empty grounds.
If the wage cap comes in Town have a wage bill of £18 million how will town ever be able to attract players (ie Garbutt) when the Championship and Prem can offer them whatever they want.
Town would only be able to offer Downes Dobra etc so much and the prem can just offer 3 or 4 times more money.
So it wont matter if Chambers makes mistakes week in week out as we are in this league for a long time, Best Town can hope for is flirting with the Play off in the Championship in 5 or so years time.

RIP Football

TimmyH added 15:43 - Jun 18
'Some fans'...that's all we should expect after the end of the season for us, social distancing in the stadium shouldn't be a problem!

ThaiBlue added 16:12 - Jun 18
Must be mad to want to watch this team while lambert in charge.

Kickingblock added 16:14 - Jun 18
Probably biased to the supporters who agree to waive their shortfall for "the good of the club"
Just a thought.

nthstd added 17:02 - Jun 18
I'll take anything going. Always thought at some point they would say season ticket holders can return but will be allocated new slots allover the ground. How many is it now 10- 9-8 thousand or did they get 14K odd again?

TractorRoyNo1 added 17:12 - Jun 18
Toilets, bars, stairs and walkways a problem but could be made 1-way.
10000 possible at 1m or 6000 at 2m, sounds like time to buy a season ticket.

Northstandveteran added 17:38 - Jun 18
Just received an email from the club.

Ipswich Town
Brand new mugs.

I initially thought this was in reference to ticket purchasing.

multiplescoregasms added 17:48 - Jun 18
In a ground that holds just over 30,000,, social distancing for the 10,000 supporters that we will be lucky to get shouldn't be a problem :-)

stiffy501 added 17:51 - Jun 18
If its reliant on the governments ( world class ) test and trace system might as well forget it lol

Keaneish added 20:14 - Jun 18
Agree KarlosFandangal - English football died the day of the PL’s inception. If any other community based enterprise was privatised there would be stern resistance yet it was welcomed with opened arms and lapped up by the mass. Now look at the state of it! An absolute mess symptomatic of the increasing socio-economic divide.

runningout added 08:06 - Jun 19
Personally I have zero interest in premier league and non ITFC televised games.

dirtydingusmagee added 15:42 - Jun 19
some fans could return , yes , as card board cut outs .lol

ITFCsince73 added 16:16 - Jun 19
Looking forward to watching Norwich get relegated personally.

strikalite added 22:53 - Jun 19
Even if they allowed say 5000 into the ground, you still have a problem regarding toilets with just a few being allowed in at a time...everything else with face masks could possibly be done, the players would have to agree a huge wage cut though, take it or leave it I suppose, maybe this would reset wages which may turn out to be a great thing....if the game below the Prem and Champ doesn't collapse first of course.

runningout added 12:55 - Jun 20
Footballers are fortunate their contacts are staying valid now Covid has hit. Or will they stay valid..

sally added 18:40 - Jun 21
Surely the season ticket holders should be reimbursed for 6 matches not 5 because of Bury.

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