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Italian FA extend Serie A season until August 2 amid coronavirus disruption

Posted By Kenneth nwakauba | In Sports | Apr 24, 2020, 6:59 am

The 2019-20 Serie A season is to be extended until August 2, the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) has announced.

UEFA on Thursday strongly recommended all top-flight leagues that have been suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic are to be completed, though it also provided guidelines for those that cannot continue.

They said: “UEFA urges national associations and leagues to explore all possible options to play all top domestic competitions giving access to UEFA club competitions to their natural conclusion. However, UEFA stresses that the health of players, spectators and all those involved in football as well as the public at large must remain the primary concern at this time.”

It was proposed to UEFA’s executive committee that European and domestic competitions run in parallel when a return to play is possible, or all domestic fixtures be completed before continental games resume at the start of August.

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Following a FIGC video conference, president Gabriele Gravina confirmed extra time will be granted for clubs to finish the remainder of the campaign.

Discussions will be held with the Italian Footballers’ Association (AIC) about extending contracts that are set to expire on June 30, when the season was due to finish.

“The football world is working incessantly and responsibly to find concrete and sustainable solutions to the crisis generated by Covid-19, including those necessary to safeguard the 2020-21 competitions,” said Gravina in a statement.

“I thank minister [for sport Vincenzo] Spadafora for the attention he gave to us in Wednesday’s meeting, during which our approach was explained in depth. We want to return to play safely because that is what common sense dictates and we are asked to do so by the international bodies to which Italian football is connected.”

However, Gravina aimed a dig at critics suggesting football has been given preferential treatment during the coronavirus crisis.

“I am astonished that I have to again realise the temptation to talk constantly about football, for the notoriety that this brings, prompts some to comment on things of which they are obviously ill-informed,” he said.

Serie A teams are hoping to return to training on May 4, when Italy’s existing lockdown measures are scheduled to be scaled back.

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