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U.K. PM: Fans could return in October

Boris Johnson on Premier League

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14: London mayor Boris Johnson meets youngsters before taking part in a game of football during a visit to the Millwall Football Club Community Trust on January 14, 2015 in London, England. The Mayor met young Londoners choosing football and better life chances over crime at the official launch of the London Premier League Kicks youth mentoring programme. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

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British prime minister Boris Johnson has opened the door to opening the doors to Premier League stadiums.

Johnson says the UK will “pilot large gatherings” in August with a hope to allow big events from October.

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Premier League matches have been played behind closed doors for all of Project Restart and the 2019-20 season will end in two weeks time.

While October would presumably limit a full season’s worth of attendance including preseason, it would be a welcome development should attendance be deemed safe.

From Sky Sports:

“We will pilot larger gatherings in venues such as sports stadia with a view to a wider reopening in the autumn,” Johnson said. “All of these measures, for August 1, should be done in a Covid-secure way. ... From October we intend to bring back audiences in stadia and allow conferences and other business events to recommence, again these changes must be done in a Covid-secure way subject to the successful outcome of pilots.”

Obviously another “wave” of coronavirus could challenge the plan, but this, for now and from a non-scientific expert perspective, would appear to be a rare bit of good news.