The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:
The head of the three English professional soccer leagues below the Premier League appealed for a “rescue package” during questioning at a parliamentary select committee hearing.
English Football League chairman Rick Parry says clubs are facing a shortfall of about $250 million because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Parry says “we are heading for a financial hole of about 200 million pounds … by the end of September.”
Parry also advocated for salary caps. He told legislators that clubs are spending too much of their turnover on salaries as they chase promotion.
Clubs are preparing for the loss of ticket revenue with crowds potentially not allowed back into stadiums in 2020.
The French Tennis Federation hopes professional players can resume individual training if the lockdown ends as planned on Monday.
FFT president Bernard Giudicelli says the protocol proposed was “favourably received by the sports ministry” and could lead to the resumption of training and other amateur activities.
Professional players would train on outside courts only at the national training centre in western Paris or other approved training centres if approved. The national training centre was made available for COVID-19 patients at the height of the virus outbreak.
Social distancing will remain in place with all staff on site obliged to wear protective masks. Players will not be required to wear them under the proposed guidelines.
All players must arrive alone and in their tennis gear and with their own rackets. Players will have a maximum of six balls and must serve only with their marked balls. All participants must keep their towels inside a bag throughout their stay.
Second-division German soccer club Erzgebirge Aue has put its entire squad in home isolation after a member of staff tested positive for the coronavirus.
It’s the first confirmed case in the German league’s second round of testing. It comes a day before a government meeting on loosening lockdown measures to pave the way for soccer to return in empty stadiums.
Aue didn’t name the staff member involved. All players, coaches and backroom staff will stay at home ahead of more coronavirus testing on Thursday.
Ten people tested positive last week from the 36 clubs in the top two men’s divisions. That included two Cologne players and a staff member. The club did not put its squad in isolation.
Belgian soccer players and their fans are engaging in a virtual wave to support health care workers and raise money for the Red Cross amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The Belgian soccer association is encouraging fans to upload short videos of themselves doing the wave. Just like Belgium internationals Dries Mertens, Thomas Meunier and Jan Vertonghen.
The association is giving fans the opportunity to upload videos until June 13. That is the date Belgium was set to play its first game at the European Championship. The tournament was postponed by a year because of the pandemic.
Health Minister Jens Spahn has defended German soccer’s plans to resume the season with regular coronavirus testing after Hertha Berlin forward Salomon Kalou posted a video flouting social distancing measures.
Spahn tells Germany’s Deutschlandfunk radio that “the basic concept makes sense and can also be an example for other pro sports.”
Hertha suspended Kalou on Monday after he live-streamed a video of himself greeting teammates with physical contact and bursting in on a teammate’s coronavirus test.
Germany’s top two soccer divisions are planning to return this month with a program of regular testing for players. The clubs have also asked players to train in small groups until now and to observe social distancing.
There were 10 positive tests from coronavirus samples taken last week from the 36 clubs in the top two divisions.