Coronavirus: Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao to ask for Copa del Rey final with fans present

By Sports Desk May 04, 2020

Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao have agreed to ask that the Copa del Rey final be held with spectators present.

Sport in Spain has been on hold since March due to the coronavirus pandemic and there is no date scheduled for the resumption of LaLiga or the postponed Copa final.

Clubs were granted permission to return to hold individual training sessions from Monday, provided strict protocols were followed.

Spanish prime minister Pedro Sanchez said on Saturday he was optimistic sport could return soon but it would likely be behind closed doors.

However, the Basque rivals will request that measure does not apply to their Copa final, which was initially scheduled to take place at Estadio de la Cartuja in Seville on April 18.

A joint-statement published by Athletic and La Real read: "The presidents of Real Sociedad and Athletic Club, both finalists of the Copa del Rey for the 2019-2020 season, after meeting with the president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation [RFEF], have agreed to ask RFEF for the final to be played with open doors, in public and in an official way, on a date to be determined and agreed between the three parties involved.

"The desire and will of both clubs has always been, now and before, to play and enjoy the final along with the supporters. This is what we would like most. A final to be lived with our supporters in the stands.

"At the same time, Real Sociedad and Athletic Club want the RFEF to guarantee that the final will be played as an official competition and will, therefore, be considered an official title.

"To this end, they have asked the general secretariat of the RFEF for the delegate committee of the RFEF General Assembly, whose next meeting will be held on Friday, to adopt a calendar amendment agreement that will enable the final to be held as an official title with the support and warmth of the fans of both teams.

"With this decision, Real Sociedad and Athletic Club wish to highlight one of the most prestigious and traditional sporting events that can be played around the world, unique in this edition, and to do so together with their fans, supporters, subscribers, members and partners, the true essence, and raison d’être of this wonderful sport."

Related items

  • Chiesa is growing after a tough start, says Juventus boss Pirlo Chiesa is growing after a tough start, says Juventus boss Pirlo

    Juventus can expect a lot more from Federico Chiesa after the Italy international opened his account for the club in midweek, according to Andrea Pirlo.  

    The 23-year-old struggled initially following his two-year loan switch from Fiorentina in October, which Juve can make permanent for a reported total fee of €50million if certain conditions are met. 

    He received a straight red card on his debut against Crotone and then failed to find the back of the net in his next seven appearances in Serie A and the Champions League.  

    In three starts and one substitute appearance in the Italian top flight, he has taken just two shots and has the second-worst passing accuracy and dribble success rate for the Bianconeri.  

    However, he has three assists to his name from the six chances he has created for his team-mates in those games.  

    Chiesa finally registered his first goal in the 3-0 Champions League win over Dynamo Kiev on Wednesday and Pirlo expects more of the same in the coming weeks as he finds his feet at the Allianz Stadium.

    "I ask a lot from Chiesa," Pirlo told Juventus TV ahead of the derby against Torino this weekend. 

    "He's doing well. It's not easy to be catapulted from Fiorentina to Juventus, but he's a very good lad. 

    "It took him time to adapt, but now he's growing after arriving with so much controversy and weight on him." 

    Pirlo could become the first coach to remain unbeaten in his first 10 Serie A games since the competition moved to a three-points-for-a-win system in 1994. 

    Standing in his way is a Torino side who have endured an abysmal start to the campaign.  

    Marco Giampaolo's men have amassed just six points from their nine games, their worst start to a season since 2002-03. 

    Pirlo, though, does not think his side will necessarily have it all their own way against their local rivals, as he expects a tough battle. 

    "This is an important derby for the two sets of fans, it's always tense," he added.  

    "It's nice to play, there are many emotions involved. I was lucky enough to be part of it several times, to win and score important goals. 

    "Torino are built well and have an excellent coach. They play proactive football with excellent players in all departments." 

    Juve go into the match fourth in Serie A, six points behind leaders Milan, having drawn five of their opening nine games.

  • Ramos missing from Madrid squad for Sevilla trip Ramos missing from Madrid squad for Sevilla trip

    Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has been left of their squad for the LaLiga clash with Sevilla on Saturday. 

    The defender has returned to training following the hamstring injury he sustained while on international duty with Spain in November. 

    Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane, however, had told a media conference prior to the squad announcement on Friday that the 34-year-old would only make the trip if he was fully fit. 

    "We're not going to take any chances with Sergio Ramos," Zidane said. 

    "I don't want to play a player who has a problem and then he makes it worse. We want all the players back". 

    Without Ramos, Madrid have drawn 1-1 with Villareal and lost 2-1 to Deportivo Alaves in league action.

    In the Champions League, Zidane's side managed a 2-0 away win over Inter but suffered a defeat by the same scoreline at Shakhtar Donetsk in midweek, putting their progression to the knockout stages in the balance. 

    Serbia striker Luka Jovic is also not included by Zidane, despite having recently recorded a negative test for COVID-19. He had a positive test while away with his national team, requiring him to spend a period in isolation.

    Madrid sit fourth in LaLiga on 17 points - seven behind leaders Real Sociedad and six behind second-placed Atletico Madrid, who they face in the derby next weekend.

  • Juventus director Paratici under investigation over Suarez's Italian exam Juventus director Paratici under investigation over Suarez's Italian exam

    Juventus sporting director Fabio Paratici is facing a criminal investigation following allegations of irregularities when Luis Suarez took an Italian citizenship exam.

    The Public Prosecutor's Office in Perugia declared in September, when Juventus were looking to sign Suarez from Barcelona, that it was looking at claims a mark for the test may have been pre-agreed.

    Perugia's finance police had already been in the process of investigating the University for Foreigners in Perugia when they raised concerns about the exam undertaken by Uruguayan Suarez.

    Juventus wanted Suarez to secure Italian citizenship to ensure they did not exceed the permitted quota of non-EU players in their squad.

    Suarez eventually joined Atletico Madrid instead, and Juventus have denied any wrongdoing.

    In a statement issued on Friday, the Turin-based club said: "Juventus Football Club confirms that today Fabio Paratici has been notified of information regarding the guarantee and the right of defence.

    "The crime alleged by the Public Prosecutor's Office at the Court of Perugia is exclusively Article 371 bis of the Criminal Code."

    That article is titled 'False information to the prosecutor or the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court'.

    Juventus added: "The club strongly reiterates the correctness of Paratici's work and is confident that the ongoing investigations will help clarify his position within a reasonable time."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.