Threatening the entire season, will the Covid-19 derail UEFA’s plans for the end of the 2020-2021 Champions League? On Monday, some clouds appeared over the final, scheduled for Istanbul on May 29th. Turkey has indeed announced the establishment of containment to curb the new wave of coronavirus in the country.
This lockdown will take effect Thursday and will be in effect until May 17, less than two weeks before the final. According to the Daily Mail, the shortened deadline prompted UEFA to “urgently” request more information from the Turkish authorities. The European body hoped to welcome supporters for this final, after having raised the maximum level of 30% imposed at the start of the season.
The Daily Mail also assures that Wembley will not be an alternative if the final is between Chelsea and Manchester City. The two English clubs play their semi-final first leg respectively this Tuesday against Real Madrid and this Wednesday against PSG. Istanbul was already due to host the final in 2020 before the coronavirus interrupted the season in the middle of the second leg. A Final 8 was then organized in Lisbon in August.
According to Reuters, 37,312 new cases of Covid-19 were reported Monday in Turkey as well as 353 deaths. Among the main measures of this new confinement, schools are now closed and travel between several cities is restricted. The authorities’ goal is to return to 5,000 positive cases per day.