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Plans to reintroduce fans to Premier League football

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that fans may be able to return to sporting stadiums as early as October. The announcement was made on 17 July, and it gave hope to the possibility of fans filling up our Premier League stadiums this autumn.

If fans are able to come back to our nation's football grounds, it will have to be done in a way that conforms to the current coronavirus guidelines. This will include social distancing that requires fans to sit in specially designated seas, and there would also be one-way systems to govern the entry and exit of all fans.

Other measures included in the guidelines are special screening procedures to be carried out at the entrances of the stadiums, along with extra hygiene facilities. All of which means that it could be some time before we start seeing Premier League stadiums back at capacity.

The government will be hosting pilot projects to reintroduce fans to sporting arenas. These include two country cricket matches, the World Snooker Championship and the Goodwood horse racing festival. All of these events take place at the end of July and the start of August, and their success will have a bearing on the roll-out of fan-attended sporting events.

The end of closed-doors football?

The Premier League has had to conduct its games behind closed doors since it restarted on 17 June. It has given us the unsettling sight of seeing the nation's best teams playing to empty stadiums.

Most football fans will have welcomed the fact that the Premier League season has been able to conclude at all. This is in marked contrast to the controversial decision to cancel the France Ligue 1 football tournament.

Although there will be no fans at the remainder of the matches in the 2019/20 Premier league season, it makes the return of fan-attended top-flight football all the more enticing.

But how will the return of fans affect the football tips found at betting resources like when the Premier League starts its 2020/21 campaign in the middle of September?

Premier League clubs to benefit from fans

One thing that we've learned from the Premier League restart is how much the smaller clubs need the support of their fans. The fact that Norwich City picked up no points behind closed doors was just one indication of how much home advantage can help.

But the absence of fans has also played its part in the relegation struggles for Bournemouth with Eddie Howe's team picking up just four points since the restart. Aston Villa have also struggled without their Villa Park faithful having gained a mere five points.

Even away from the relegation battle, it was interesting to see how Sheffield United struggled to cope with playing behind closed doors. While the Blades have had an outstanding season, Chris Wilder's team found it very hard to get going after the restart, and have only recently recaptured their past form.

Sheffield United aren't the only Yorkshire club who will be benefiting from the reintroduction of fans this autumn. This because this September will almost certainly mark Leeds United's long overdue return to Premier League football. Although fans will be limited, it will be heartwarming to see Elland Road once again being used for top-flight football.

However, the one sad note would be that if Brentford do manage to escape the Championship to join the Premier League, the team would do so without playing at the Griffin Park stadium. The club is set to leave the 116-year old stadium at the end of the season, and it will be a sorry farewell to one of the football league's best-loved grounds.

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