Spectator Restrictions Could Loosen Up By Start of Ligue 1 Season

The 2020-2021 Ligue 1 campaign will kick off next month with Paris Saint-Germain set to host Metz in the team’s season opener. At the moment, current guidelines call for all sporting events in France to allow a max of 5,000 spectators into a given venue. But this could all soon change.

Minister of Sport Roxana Maracineanu has recently touched on the possibility of allowing more fans into stadiums sooner rather than later. All signs point to this becoming a reality by the start of league play in France on Aug. 23. In an interview with Le Parisien, she spoke about the next steps in coming to a decision to ease spectator restrictions and also on the slight chance of completely moving away from any kind of limitation on the number of fans at venues.

“We could propose to move away from the notion of a gauge, but more simply on physical distance,” Maracineanu said. “By making sure that the spectators meet as little as possible in the flows that exist for these major events. Of course, everything will also depend on the evolution of the health situation.”

As expected, Maracineanu and the defence council are taking precautions in any such decision regarding the number of fans allowed at stadiums. While the notion of completely moving away from the spectator restrictions may be far-fetched at the moment, she does believe that more fans will soon be allowed to attend fixtures but will make rational decisions based on health guidelines. This could certainly all come to fruition before PSG’s home league opener.

“There are several proposals, but the target is mid-August, for the resumption of the Ligue 1 championship,” Maracineanu said. “But once again, this proposal will be studied in the light of the health context. With 5,000 people, we are already pioneers in Europe. Admittedly, matches in Europe continue, but behind closed doors. In France, we’ve really given ourselves the chance to start again with the public.”

PSG’s upcoming friendly against Celtic FC and duo of cup finals could very well end up being key factors in any such decision regarding this matter. If all goes well, the Parc des Princes could soon see more fans gradually fill up the iconic venue as the Ligue 1 season progresses.

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