The ever-expanding Coronavirus pandemic is impacting lives across the globe, and the impact on the soccer world is growing by the day.
Seasons are being suspended, tournaments postponed, and now Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has become the most high-profile soccer figure to be stricken by the Coronavirus, joining Juventus defender Daniele Rugani among the afflicted. Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi has also tested positive, leading to the self-isolation of the Chelsea first team, including Christian Pulisic.
American soccer has been put on hold, with Thursday bringing announcements that the 2020 MLS season has been suspended and upcoming USMNT and USWNT matches canceled.
In Europe, the English Premier League La Liga, Serie A and Ligue 1 have suspended their seasons, with Real Madrid, Juventus and Arsenal going into quarantine. The German Bundesliga was the last remaining hold out, but finally postponed this weekend’s matches.
Liga MX remains the lone major soccer league still planning to play its games this weekend.
SBI will provide live updates on the impact of the Coronavirus on the game of soccer.
Here are the latest developments:
The German Bundesliga has suspended this week’s matches, and will recommend that the league be suspended until April 2nd. (READ)
German clubs FC Nuremberg and Hannover 96 have been placed into self-isolation.
The English Premier League and League Championship have been postponed until April. (READ)
All UEFA Champions League and Europa League matches have been postponed. (READ)
Mikel Arteta has tested positive for the Coronavirus, leading to the postponement of Arsenal’s Premier League match against Brighton. The Arsenal team has been placed in quarantine. (READ)
Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi has tested positive for the Coronavirus, leading to the self-isolation of the Chelsea first team, and putting Chelsea’s upcoming match with Aston Villa in doubt. (READ)
The summer’s European Championships could be postponed to 2021 in order to allow European leagues to have that time of year to complete domestic campaigns that are being put on hold by the Coronavirus pandemic. (READ)
Next week’s UEFA Champions League Round of 16 matches between Manchester City and Real Madrid, and Juventus against Lyon, have been postponed. (READ)
The La Liga season has been suspended for two weeks in the wake of Real Madrid players being quarantined due to a Real Madrid basketball player being found to have been infected by the Coronavirus. (READ)
Juventus has confirmed that defender Daniele Rugani has tested positive for Coronavirus. (READ)
Spain’s Copa Del Rey final between Athletic Bilbao and Real Sociedad has been postponed due to the Coronavirus outbreak. (READ)
Manchester City’s English Premier League match against Arsenal —scheduled for Wednesday — was postponed after it was discovered that Arsenal players recently interacted with Olympiakos and Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis, who has been confirmed to have contracted the virus. (READ)
German second-division player Timo Hubers of Hannover 96 is the latest professional soccer play to be confirmed as infected with the Coronavirus. (READ)
The first reported case of professional soccer players being infected with the virus came two weeks ago in Italy, with Serie C club US Pianese having three players and a staff member infected. (READ)
French superstar Kylian Mbappe was cleared to play in Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Borussia Dortmund after being tested and cleared following a recent illness. (READ)
In other Paris Saint Germain news, the French League Cup Final between Paris Saint Germain and Lyon, scheduled for April 4, has been postponed. (READ)
UEFA has formally postponed both the Sevilla-Roma and Getafe-Inter Milan Europa League matches due to the travel restrictions now imposed between Spain and Italy. (READ)
The Sevilla-Roma Europa League match had been postponed after Roma’s flight was blocked from flying into Spain. (READ)
Getafe had refused to travel to Milan for its Europa League match against Inter Milan, with Getafe’s president saying he’ll accept his team’s elimination from the competition if necessary. (READ)
The next two rounds of La Liga matches in Spain will be played behind closed doors. (READ)
In Italy, Serie A matches (and all sporting events) have been postponed through April 3. (READ)
FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation have agreed to postpone upcoming World Cup qualifiers in March and June in response to the Coronavirus epidemic. (READ)