Because of the pandemic, football matches (here the Emirates Cup final, with Arsenal against Chelsea at Wembley Stadium, UK on August 1) are played behind closed doors - Paul Marriott / Colorsport / SIPA

Because of the coronavirus which continues to spread, fans of sporting events will have to take their troubles patiently. The World Health Organization on Wednesday deemed "unrealistic" to hold sporting events this year bringing together large crowds in countries suffering from local transmission of the new coronavirus.

Asked during a live chat on WHO social networks, WHO's director of health emergencies, Michael Ryan also said that it was impossible to predict the possible date of resumption of major sporting events. "We do not know," admitted the Irish epidemiologist.

Risky events

"Large crowds of 40,000, 50,000, 60,000 people ... It is not only the risk of being in the stadium, it is the risk of going to the stadium, by public transport, to bars and clubs", he explained.

“Imagine all the problems we have now with nightclubs and bars, and you condense it all into a four or five hour experience, where thousands of people take the same public transport to one place, get involved. in the match and then all the social aspects that follow. (…) That could be disastrous ”, he pointed out.

Pay "a little more" attention

The Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Euro 2020 football have been postponed until next year, while major football competitions like the Champions League and the English Premier League have been forced to play behind closed doors.

"Maybe we should expect that as things open up, we go from zero people in games to maybe 1,000 or 2,000," said Michael Ryan.

“We all want our sport to come back. We're just going to have to be careful a bit more ”.


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