Premier League

Premier League to permit up to 500 away fans for final 2 rounds of fixtures

Ross Jackson
Apr 30, 2021, 11:45 AM GMT+1
Some away supporters will soon be allowed at Premier League grounds
Some away supporters will soon be allowed at Premier League grounds / DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/Getty Images
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Up to 500 away fans will be allowed to attend the final two rounds of Premier League fixtures this season, following the government's announcement that 10,000 supporters can enter stadiums for the matches.

The government's current roadmap will see restrictions lifted further on 17 May, with plans initially put in place to have spectators in attendance for the final matchday of the campaign six days later.

However, the issue was raised that only half of teams would benefit from playing in front of their own fans, with just the final round of matches falling after the 17th.

In a bid to level the playing field, it was recently announced that the penultimate gameweek would also see 10,000 fans attend, meaning every side would be given the chance to play in front of their supporters just once this season.

And The Times has now revealed that of the 10,000-strong crowds, 500 of them will be away fans. Premier League chief Richard Masters has written to all 20 clubs to inform them of the decision, with the document outlining the plans for the final two rounds of top-flight matches.

“Government has informed us that, as COVID-19 indicators continue to improve, it is planning to relax the ‘no away fans’ stipulation from the Stage Five Guidance, governing the playing of our final match rounds in season 2020/21," the letter read.

“The return of fans and ultimately full stadiums remains our primary goal, therefore our view is that we must accept the opportunity to host as wide a range of supporters as possible.

The Premier League is set to allow 500 away fans into stadiums before the end of the season
The Premier League is set to allow 500 away fans into stadiums before the end of the season / Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

“That being the case, the executive proposes an away ticket allocation of 5% of available capacity [a maximum of 500 away fans] at round 37 and 38 matches, respecting the £30 away ticket price cap.”

Masters' letter went on to add that some clubs may struggle to obtain permission from their local Safety Advisory Group (SAG), with social distancing potentially set to be enforced at the stadiums.

“This policy is designed to accommodate away supporters, maximise home fan numbers and reduce the likelihood of SAG resistance,” the letter continued.

“This brings away fans in line with government’s planned ‘opening up’ of wider society, including travel, from May 17. On this basis, each sport would have the discretion to allow away supporters to attend events should it wish to.

10,000 fans will be present for the final two Premier League gameweeks
10,000 fans will be present for the final two Premier League gameweeks / LLUIS GENE/Getty Images

“[We] have spoken to several clubs already about their views of this decision as well as the impact it may have on travel plans, broadcast scheduling and SAG/local authority permissions.

"Clearly this is a change from the previous government advice upon which we moved match rounds 36 and 37 to allow each club to host a fixture with home supporters and those clubs who have worked hard to secure early kick-off times to satisfy broadcast commitments.”

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