• Wednesday, Sep 28, 2022
  • Last Update : 09:54 am

Napoli stay at home for Juve clash

  • Published at 10:24 am October 5th, 2020

Juventus players were present for the third game of the season, along with referees and a handful of supporters under the rain

Napoli failed to turn up for their Serie A clash against Juventus in Turin on Sunday after a coronavirus row threw Italian football into chaos.

The match was abandoned 45 minutes after its scheduled 1845 GMT start time after Napoli did not travel to Juve's Allianz Stadium, and now Gennaro Gattuso's side risk forfeiting the game 3-0.

Juventus players were present for the third game of the season, along with referees and a handful of supporters under the rain.

But not the Neapolitans, who remained in isolation at home on the instructions of the regional health authorities of the Campania region which hosts the city of Naples, after midfielders Eljif Elmas and Piotr Zielinski both tested positive during the week.

Juventus president Andrea Agnelli told Sky Sport Italia: "(Napoli president Aurelio) De Laurentiis asked me to postpone the match, I replied that there are regulations to be respected." 

"A 3-0 win? I always prefer to win on the field," Agnelli added.

Juventus had confirmed they would "take to the field" as scheduled despite two positive tests among their staff this week, with coach Andrea Pirlo and the squad arriving an hour before kick-off.

"We have protocols that are very clear," said Agnelli.

"The protocol was studied by the Federation with the government. It is a living document, the important thing is to have the spirit of sporting honesty, the cases will be dealt with and resolved from time to time."

Serie A had insisted that all the health protocols were in place for the match to safely go ahead "even in the event of positive tests".

It added that these measures are "applicable to the situation of Napoli, who have two positive players for Covid-19".

Napoli are the first team in Europe's five major leagues not to take to the pitch due to the coronavirus pandemic in a scheduled game.

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