Serie A teams to resume training in May

It is hoped that Serie A fixtures could resume between May 27 and June 2 - with an end date for the season of early August.

Empty San Siro stadium, in Milan, Italy (AP photo)

London: Serie A sides will be allowed to return to individual training from next week after Italy Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte gave the go-ahead for professional sports teams to resume training in May amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

In a televised address to the nation, Conte on Sunday said that players would be able "to undertake training individually from May 4, in groups from May 18, and then we'll evaluate if there are the conditions to allow the season to be completed", reports BBC Sport.

"Right now, we need to complete all the discussions to ensure that if we do reach that stage, we'll do so in the utmost safety and security. We are passionate about sport and don't want our athletes to get sick.

"I'm passionate for football. Like many Italians, I initially found it strange that the championship could be interrupted or suspended but I think that even the most ardent fan understands that there wasn't an alternative," he added.

It is hoped that Serie A fixtures could resume between May 27 and June 2 - with an end date for the season of early August. However, no formal date has been announced for the resumption of the league, even before empty stands.

Italy was the first European country to be hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and Serie A has been suspended since March 9. Juventus are currently at the top and every team has at least 12 games left to play.

However, on Sunday, Italy reported 260 new deaths - the lowest daily toll since March 14.

Last week, Serie A's 20 clubs had voted unanimously to complete the league season.

In Germany, the Bundesliga is preparing to resume without spectators on May 9, making it the first major European league back in action. However, it needs a final go-ahead from the political leaders.

More than 26,000 people have lost their lives in Italy so far due to COVID-19 which has claimed over 2 lakh lives worldwide.


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