Regional government allows Napoli to resume training

Football staff wearing a mask for coronavirus outbreak (Getty Images)
Football staff wearing a mask for coronavirus outbreak (Getty Images)

Napoli were on Saturday given the green light to restart training next week by regional authorities as Serie A clubs eye a return to action from the coronavirus pandemic shutdown.

The Campania region, where Napoli are based, said in a statement that "the region's positive ruling has already be sent to the government", adding that it had asked for an OK as soon as possible "in order to enable training to restart on Monday".

Campania is the second region in Italy to allow its local Serie A club to recommence preparations, under strict health guidelines, at their training ground after Emilia-Romagna made a similar ruling on Friday for Bologna, Parma, SPAL and Sassuolo.

Lazio, which hosts the Rome-based club of the same name and city rivals Roma, Hellas Verona's home the Veneto and Sardinia, where Cagliari are based, are expected to follow suit.

The announcement comes despite a government decree which stops players from training at their locked-off sports centres where social distancing could be guaranteed, but allows them to run in public parks.

Italy is preparing to relax its lockdown on Monday as the Covid-19 numbers continue a positive trend. The virus has killed over 28 000 people in the country. Many regions have had a fraction of the number of deaths experienced by Lombardy and Piedmont in the north.

On Friday, Serie A unanimously voted to finish the 2019-20 season, suspended since 9 March.

However, Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora this week said the chances of restarting were "increasingly narrow". He also vowed to ensure that football's finances would be "damaged as little as possible" should the season be declared over.

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