Rennes: Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is delighted that fans are set to return to some stadiums in limited numbers, following the UK government’s recent announcement.
Lampard’s remarks came after his side defeated Rennes 2-1 in the Champions League here on Tuesday.
“I think first and foremost we want fans back. I am not sure exactly how the system will work, it is something that needs to be discussed further, but what was really nice for me was the positive nature of the fact that there is movement and something will happen if it feels safe,” the club’s official website quoted Lampard as saying.
“That’s the most important thing because these are very uncertain times. So hopefully the level playing field remains, but we have some fans back and we move forward quickly. I am just happy with the news because there are a lot of things that have been disrupted in life recently, which are more important than football. But in football, just in terms of our jobs and playing in stadiums and wanting fans back for the atmosphere in football, what it means for the fans, it is becoming more and more apparent every game that we play. So, if safe, then, of course, we are really happy,” he added.
Announcing the latest set of measures designed to combat the spread of coronavirus on Monday, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that the four-week national lockdown in England will end on December 2 and will be replaced by a new three-tiered system, Goal.com had reported.
The number of fans that will be allowed in the stands will depend on what tier a club’s stadium is situated in.
According to Goal.com, stadiums in areas placed in tier 1 will be allowed the entry of 4,000 fans, sitting while maintaining social distancing, or half of their maximum capacity, whichever is fewer. Stadiums in areas situated in tier 2 can hold matches in the presence of 2,000 socially distanced fans or half of their maximum capacity, whichever is fewer.
However, the venues in areas placed in tier 3 will continue to hold matches behind closed doors.
The Premier League had also welcomed the announcement and released a statement saying: “Fans have been greatly missed at Premier League matches and therefore we welcome the Prime Minister’s announcement today regarding the return of supporters for the first time since March, albeit at small numbers.”