How Suspending Football In Spain Affects Athletic Club
The ongoing Coronavirus outbreak has rocked the world. As cases continue to increase countries are taking extraordinary measures in hopes of slowing down the transmission and this has had a massive impact on football. Just days after making the decision to play games behind closed doors, La Liga announced on Thursday that the league is now suspended.
For the next two weeks there will be no football in Spain and the league will be constantly analyzing the issue to determine whether or not to lift or extend the suspension. This decision means that Athletic’s matches against Atlético Madrid and Eibar will not take place as previously scheduled. With this being a constantly evolving situation there is no word on when/if games will be rescheduled.
Athletic have since announced that training has been canceled for all teams aside from the men’s and women’s first teams as well as Bilbao Athletic. Lezama remains closed to the public which means that there will be no formal press conferences taking place with players or manager Gaizka Garitano.
The status of the Copa del Rey final is also an issue. Yesterday it was announced that the match, which was previously scheduled for 18 April, has been suspended and that the RFEF would meet with both clubs on 25 March to determine the reschedule date. The outbreak is constantly changing and in just 24 hours RFEF president Luis Rubiales has now explained that setting a new date by 25 March will likely not be possible.
“We are shuffling three options,” said Rubiales. “The first is to play the game with the fans, which is what we would like. Playing it behind closed doors or spending it if it’s impossible to play it safely are the other options.” There had been talk of rescheduling the final for the last weekend of May but planning that far in advance has become extremely challenging. Rubiales has also warned that the Cup final could be permanently suspended.