Fans barred from all Italian sporting events through April 3 because of coronavirus

The coronavirus will force sports fans in Italy to stay at home for the next month.

The Italian government announced on Wednesday that sporting events will resume, but they will be played in empty stadiums until at least April 3 as the country grapples with the spread of COVID-19.

Coronavirus continues to spread in Italy

As of Wednesday afternoon, the illness caused by the coronavirus has claimed 107 lives and infected 3,089 people in Italy, according to the nation’s Civil Protection Agency.

Twenty-eight new deaths were announced on Wednesday while 276 people have recovered since being infected. It marks the largest outbreak of COVID-19 in Europe.

Italy also announced that it is closing all schools and universities until March 15.

Serie A matches will be among the Italian sporting events played in empty stadiums in March. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Serie A games expected to resume

The news means the resumption of Serie A play after several games in the nation’s top soccer league were postponed over the weekend. According to the Associated Press, the league hasn’t released a revised schedule but plans to resume matches this weekend without fans, including the highly anticipated Juventus-Inter Milan game that was postponed.

The news also means that Italy’s Six Nations men’s and women’s rugby matches scheduled for March in Rome will be played without fans present. According to the BBC, those matches will take place on March 14 and 15.

The coronavirus scare has also threatened to halt a number of cycling events scheduled in Italy.

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