Barcelona Pushing for Fans to Be Allowed in Camp Nou for Atlético Madrid Clash

FC Barcelona v Real Sociedad  - La Liga
Barcelona want fans back in Camp Nou in time to face Atlético Madrid | Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Barcelona officials are pushing for fans to be allowed back into Camp Nou in time for the visit of Atlético Madrid on 1 July.

The Spanish government has ruled that all matches must be played behind closed doors for the remainder of the season in an attempt to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Lionel MessiLionel Messi
Barcelona played behind closed doors against Leganes | Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Spain was one of the worst-hit countries during the early stages of the pandemic, but as the country has begun to get on top of the situation, rules have changed to grant the population more freedom, with a ‘state of alarm’ officially ending this weekend.

Social distancing rules have been eased and people are allowed into restaurants, bars and even nightclubs, while according to Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona believe that such liberties should also be granted to football supporters.

Barcelona are adamant that they could host a small number of fans in Camp Nou without posing any health risks. The 98,000-capacity stadium would allow for sufficient social distancing and fans could be given staggered entrance times to ensure there are not large groups waiting at one time.

The idea would be to hold around 30,000 fans in the ground, and La Liga officials have also approved Barcelona’s plans, believing that it would be safe to welcome fans back as the outdoor stadiums would be ventilated more than restaurants and clubs.

President Javier Tebas has made no secret of his desire to see fans return to the ground, but the problem is that the Spanish government do not believe it could be done safely.

Javier TebasJavier Tebas
Javier Tebas wants fans back in stadiums before the end of the season | Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

Barcelona have already begun preparing a plan for welcoming fans back, which would include texting each supporter to let them know when it is safe to enter the stadium, but they may need some more suggestions to convince the government.

The hope is that fans will be allowed back in time to face Atlético, but Barcelona would be just as happy to play in front of fans beforehand. They will host Athletic Club on Tuesday before travelling to face Celta Vigo on Saturday, but the meeting with Atlético is seen as the most realistic time to reintroduce spectators.

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