The footballing headlines are currently being written by the Bundesliga, which returns this weekend. However, another league is pressing on with plans to join them and that is Serie A, the first major league to suspend games due to the Coronavirus outbreak.
Plans are in place to resume the action in Italy on June 13, and with two key elements already in place, it seems inevitable that the league will get the green light from the government unless we see a drastic change to the situation.
Team Training Agreed & Starting on Monday
Players involved for Serie A teams have been back training since last Monday, although they were only allowed to train individually. This changes next Monday when they can train as a team again.
This goes against social distancing measures that are in place in Italy but is needed for football to get back. Seeing this agreed and implemented is a huge step forward for clubs who want play to resume, it is seen as the biggest obstacle for those who are looking to resume elsewhere next month.
The seal of approval for games behind closed doors seems to be a formality, assuming that there are no football-related cases due to players coming together at training and the situation in the country doesn’t change.
This is something to keep an eye on. Just last week, the Coronavirus spread through players at Fiorentina, with three players plus three staff members contracting the virus. Another club, Torino, also confirmed that they have a player who has tested positive.
What is the League Situation in Italy?
Serie A was one of the first leagues to be called off, so clubs have 12 games left to play, more than any of the other big European leagues who are hoping to return next month. This will mean a lot of midweek fixtures to get things finished for the deadline that FIFA have created, which is the end of June.
Hopefully, this is the case, because we look set to have a fantastic title race between Juventus and Italy. Those who bet on Serie A will remember Lazio going on a fantastic run before lockdown and pulling themselves into contention while Inter Milan faded away. This is a two-horse race between Juventus and Lazio, with current holders Juventus having a one-point lead at the top.
There is a game to be played between these two, which we don’t know the date of yet. However, it will come five games from the end of the season. Juventus will host, though some benefit of that is taken away by having no fans, and this could be the game that decides where the Serie A title goes this season.
It is also worth mentioning the bottom for those looking to bet on relegation in Serie A. Lecce are currently in the final relegation spot, but only on goal difference and many teams above them could get dragged in. Clubs up to Fiorentina in 13th will be looking over their shoulder to see how things are developing at the bottom.