Sport

PSG to play Champions League tie with Dortmund behind closed doors

Fans will not be allowed into the Parc des Princes to watch PSG star Neymar try to help his team into the Champions League quarter-finals.
Fans will not be allowed into the Parc des Princes to watch PSG star Neymar try to help his team into the Champions League quarter-finals. AFP/Anne-Christine Poujoulat

Police chiefs in Paris have ordered the second leg of Paris Saint-Germain's last 16 Champions League match against Borussia Dortmund match to be played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus outbreak.

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Wednesday night's game at the Parc des Princes was expected to attract more than 40,000 people to the western outskirts of Paris.

Supporters at the match seemed unlikely following a meeting on Sunday night between President Emmanuel Macron and top health officials at the Elysée palace.

Health minister Olivier Véran emerged from the session to declare that gatherings of more than 1,000 people would be banned throughout France and the closure of schools in the country's worst hit regions.

Order

"Coronavirus: following Sunday's emergency cabinet meeting, the Paris préfecture has decided that  #PSGBVB will go ahead behind closed doors", the préfecture said on social media.

The state of North Rhine Westphalia, where Dortmund is situated, has been the worst hit in Germany, with nearly 500 confirmed infections.

"We were prepared for this eventuality and have made the appropriate preparations," Dortmund said in a statement on Monday.

Dortmund go into the return leg leading 2-1. PSG have not reached the last eight of European club football's most prestigious competition since 2016.

The French club's Qatari owners have poured nearly one billion euros into acquiring talent such as Angel di Maria, Neymar and Kylian Mbappé to provide the ultimate triumph.

"PSG takes note of the decision of the préfecture's decision," the club said in a statement on Monday. "Fans will be updated about refunds in due course."

France is the second-worst affected European country after Italy with 1,126 cases detected and 19 deaths.

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