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Portuguese PM Antonio Costa Allows Football To Resume, Health Ministry Clearance Pending

Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa on Thursday, April 30 announced a gradual, 'sector-by-sector' lifting of lockdown restrictions, as per reports.

Portuguese league

The Portuguese government has stated that the country’s soccer league will be allowed to resume on May 30 following the stoppage forced by the coronavirus pandemic. Football leagues across the world have come to an abrupt halt since March, with the UEFA deadline to submit a final proposal. 

READ: France's Ligue 1 Cancelled; No Sporting Event In Country Till September Says PM Philippe

Sporting activities likely to resume

Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa on Thursday, April 30 announced a gradual, 'sector-by-sector' lifting of lockdown restrictions, as per reports. Starting Monday, May 4 the country will be following a three-phase plan to open different sectors of the economy.

"We know this process has risks. We know that as we open up various activities, the risk of transmission will increase. I will never be ashamed to take a step back if necessary for the safety of the Portuguese,” said Costa while addressing the media.

Antonio Costa said the resumption still depends on health authorities approving measures to make stadiums meet hygiene conditions. However, the games will be played without fans.

READ: Bundesliga’s May Restart Plan Faces Increasing Opposition As Health Risk Looms Large

Across Europe however, the situation is different in every country. The French government, on Wednesday, announced that there will be no sporting events till September, leading to Ligue 1 ending with PSG being awarded as the winners. 

Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Sunday, April 26 stated that the government will be slowly lifting restrictions in the country and will allow professional sports to resume training from May 18. 

READ: Dutch Football League Cancelled Immediately; No Winners, Promotion Or Relegation This Year

In Germany, there are discussions ongoing regarding the resumption of the league and other sports activities. However, the health risk posed due to the virus has increased the chances of the decision to be pushed back by a few weeks.

In the Netherlands, Royal Dutch Football Association has decided to cancel the remainder of the Dutch football league immediately due to the coronavirus pandemic. In an announcement on Friday, April 24, the authorities stated that the decision was necessary and took note that it will "cause great disappointment" to some fans and clubs.

READ: Italy Allows Sports Teams To Resume Training From May 18, Lockdown To Be Lifted In Phase

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