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Friday, 24 September 2021

Italian PM says training can start in May, no date for Serie A re-start

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Italian PM says training can start in May, no date for Serie A re-start
Italian PM says training can start in May, no date for Serie A re-start

Giuseppe Conte says individual trraining can start on May 4, with team training beginning two weeks later.

SHOWS: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA (FILE - DECEMBER 21, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1.

JUVENTUS TRAINING UNDERWAY 2.

CRISTIANO RONALDO TRAINING AMONG TEAM MATES 3.

PLAYERS IN CIRCLE PASSING BALL 4.

COACH MAURIZIO SARRI (GLASSES) WATCHING ON 5.

RONALDO PASSING BALL 6.

SARRI 7.

GONZALO HIGUAIN (LEFT), DOUGLAS COSTA AND PAULO DYBALA (BACK), WHO TESTED POSITIVE FOR CORONAVIRUS MADRID, SPAIN (FILE - SEPTEMBER 17, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 8.

JUVENTUS DEFENDER DANIELE RUGANI, WHO TESTED POSITIVE FOR CORONAVIRUS (MIDDLE, FACING CAMERA) VALENCIA, SPAIN (FILE - SEPTEMBER 18, 2018) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 9.

MATUIDI AMONG TEAMMATES 10.

MATUIDI'S SHOES AND MATUIDI APPIANO GENTILE, ITALY (FILE - DECEMBER 9, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 11.

VARIOUS OF INTER MILAN STRIKER ROMELU LUKAKU ARRIVING ON PITCH 12.

VARIOUS OF STRIKER LAUTARO MARTINEZ ARRIVING ON PITCH 13.

VARIOUS OF COACH ANTONIO CONTE ARRIVING ON PITCH 14.

VARIOUS OF PLAYERS JOGGING NAPLES, ITALY (FILE - MARCH 4, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 15.

VARIOUS OF CLEANERS WEARING PROTECTIVE SUITS SANITISING SEATS AT THE SAN PAOLO STADIUM AHEAD OF THE SECOND LEG OF THE COPPA ITALIA SEMI-FINAL BETWEEN NAPOLI AND INTER MILAN, WHICH WAS POSTPONED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS TURIN, ITALY (FILE - MARCH 12, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 16.

EXTERIORS OFJUVENTUS' ALLIANZ STADIUM 17.

JUVENTUS LOGO ON EXTERIOR OF STADIUM 18.

MAN WALKING INTO ENTRANCE AT STADIUM 19.

EXTERIOR OF STADIUM 20.

SIGN, READING (English): "END OF THE MATCH" ON EXTERIOR OF STADIUM MILAN, ITALY (FILE - MARCH 12, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 21.

EXTERIOR OF SAN SIRO STADIUM 22.

SIGN, READING: "SAN SIRO MUSEUM & TOUR, SAN SIRO STORE CLOSED" 23.

MEMBER OF GROUND STAFF WORKING ON PITCH 24.

EXTERIOR OF STADIUM MILAN, ITALY (FILE - MARCH 1, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 25.

EXTERIOR OF SAN SIRO STADIUM SEEN FROM GATE 26.

EXTERIORS OF SAN SIRO STADIUM 27.

VARIOUS OF ELECTRONIC BOARD OUTSIDE STADIUM READING (English and Italian) "AC MILAN - GENOA CFC MATCH MOVED TO MAY THE 13TH 2020" 28.

EMPTY PARKING LOTS IN FRONT OF STADIUM 29.

SERIE A LOGO OUTSIDE CLOSED OFFICE 30.

SERIE A CLOSED OFFICE 31.

SERIE A LOGO ON WINDOW OF CLOSED OFFICE STORY: Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte gave the go-ahead on Sunday (April 26) for professional sports teams to start training again in May following the novel coronavirus outbreak but did not set a date for soccer's top-flight Serie A championship to resume.

Conte, announcing measures to ease the lockdown during a televised address to the country, said individual training could start on May 4, when players would still have to respect social distancing rules, and that team training could begin on May 18.

Italy was the first European country to be hit hard by the coronavirus and Serie A has been suspended since March 9.

The suspension followed a chaotic fortnight in which the country attempted to carry on with matches behind closed doors.

Conte said sports minister Vincenzo Spadafora would work "intensively" with scientists and sports leaders to ensure training was safe.

"Then we will try to see if they can continue with the championships that are suspended.

We will only reach this conclusion if it can be guaranteed that it is safe.

We don't want our athletes to get sick.

"I'm passionate for football," he added.

"Like many Italians, I initially found it strange that the championship could be interrupted or suspended but I think that even the most ardent fan understands that there wasn't an alternative." The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) has already drawn up a medical protocol for training.

For the start of training, each club will form a group of players, technical staff, doctors and physiotherapists who will be tested and then isolated in a summer-style training camp.

There are also plans to donate five COVID test-kits for each kit used by clubs to avoid the criticism that football is taking away much-needed resources from other areas.

There are 12 rounds of matches still to play in Serie A plus a number of outstanding games from previous rounds.

Title holders Juventus are one point clear of Lazio at the top.

(Production: Stefan Haskins)

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