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Sunderland games under Covid: Who can and can't attend behind-closed-doors matches when football returns to the Stadium of Light

Football fans on Wearside could be forced to wait until October until they are allowed back into the Stadium of Light.

By James Harrison
Wednesday, 12th August 2020, 1:07 pm

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Sunderland's Stadium of Light
Sunderland's Stadium of Light

According to city officials, this means there could be more than a month’s worth of football, at least, played at the Stadium of Light behind closed doors.

But while COVID-19 restrictions may mean spectators are barred, dozens of others will be allowed into the ground for ties – not least the players themselves.

This includes:

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:: The players

:: Management and support staff

:: Referees and other match officials

:: Essential employees, such as cleaners, security and ground staff

:: ‘Blue light services’, such as police and paramedics

:: Accredited media

Representatives of other public bodies, such as the Sports Ground Safety Authority and local authority, will also be able to attend if needed.

Current government plans anticipate beginning to allow some fans back into football grounds from October, although at the Stadium of Light this is likely to fall far short of the maximum 48,339 capacity allowed under the terms of the ground’s safety certificate.

According to the English Football League this is due to kick-off the weekend of September 12 and finish by May 9.

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