No Leeds away fans allowed until 2021/22 after Premier League announcement
The Premier League has announced that no away fans will be permitted in grounds for the rest of the season, striking a cruel blow to many Leeds United fans.
This comes after a recent report that gave fresh hope to supporters that they would be allowed back on their travels.
The Times published an excerpt of a letter by Premier League chief executive Richard Masters who said up to 500 away fans could be let into stadiums for rounds 37 and 38 of the current campaign.
That would have meant Leeds taking a 500-strong following to St Mary’s for a clash with Southampton on May 19 in our penultimate fixture of the season.
But on Wednesday afternoon the Premier League put paid to those plans in a statement on their website.
It read, “Following consultation with clubs, it was agreed matches would not be open to away supporters due to varying operational challenges across the League and the need to deliver a consistent approach, while maximising the opportunity for home-fan attendance.
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“The safety and security of supporters is of paramount importance. Clubs have a proven track record of providing COVID-safe environments and have operational plans in place ready to safely welcome supporters back to their stadiums.
“Fans have been greatly missed at Premier League matches and this marks a key step towards full stadiums, including away fans, from the start of the 2021/22 season.”
It’s obviously been agreed for the right reasons but that doesn’t mean it’s any less disappointing to hear this news.
Loyal fans that have been going around the grounds and up and down the country for years gone by will have been enthused by the recent report by the Times, which suggested they could be allowed to follow their team on the road before the end of the season.
But now they’ll have to wait until the start of the 2021/21 Premier League campaign before being able to witness their side in the top-tier.
The last time Whites supporters were in a Premier League away ground as a top-tier side was 2004, so it’s been a long time coming.
That should make it even more special when it finally rolls around, and fingers crossed that will be the first away game of next season, barring any dramatic changes to the Covid-19 situation in the country.
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