Premier League has welcomed the British government’s announcement on the easing of lockdown restrictions amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The Chief Executive for the Premier League, Richard Masters on Monday stated that it is their priority to have full stadiums from next season.
The government had announced in February that under the third stage of a four-stage roadmap of bringing normalcy in the country, stadiums would be allowed to hold up to 50 percent of their capacity, or 4,000 people, whichever is lower from May 17. The last two league games of the 2020/21 campaign will be having spectators in the stadium.
For the same a special provision will be made for large outdoor, seated venues, so that they can open doors to up to 10,000 people or 25 percent of the capacity, whichever is lower. Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed on Monday the roadmap would progress as planned.
Matches in England’s top-flight have taken place behind closed doors since June, apart from a brief window late last year when small crowds were allowed before the second wave of the pandemic. Last week, Premier League said that home fans will be able to attend the penultimate round of matches to be played on May 18-19 and the final day May 23.
Masters admitted that it would be brilliant to see the fans back as they have been hugely missed, that the league hasn’t been the same without them. The presence of the fans will ensure a fantastic finale to the end of the season. He also said that they will continue to work with the government and other authorities as the priority is to have full vibrant stadiums which include away supporters from the start of next season.
The addition of bringing back fans will see a significant rise in revenues for the clubs of the Premier League as they have lost money due to the lack of attendees, amidst the Coronavirus Pandemic. A crowd of 8,000 watched Manchester City beat Tottenham Hotspur in the League Cup final on April 25, while this weekend’s FA Cup final is expected to have 21,000 fans present. Premier League clubs reportedly lost £100 million per month due to lack of matchday revenue during this season.