La Liga suspended as Real Madrid self-quarantines over coronavirus

Madrid, Mar 12 (efe-epa).- Real Madrid’s first teams in football and basketball went into two weeks of self-quarantine on Thursday after a member of the basketball squad tested positive for coronavirus amid a growing outbreak in Spain.

LaLiga has suspended matches in the top and second-tier leagues for at least the next two weeks. The fixtures had previously been scheduled to be played behind closed doors.

Real Madrid said in a statement the quarantine measures would be applied to the first teams in both disciplines as players share the club’s facilities in the northeast of the Spanish capital.

Madrid is the worst-affected region in the country with at least 1,300 people infected and 38 killed so far, according to the regional health ministry on Wednesday morning.

“The facilities at our sporting complex will be closed and we recommend all Real Madrid employees who work there to go into quarantine as well,” the club said.

“The matches scheduled for today and tomorrow, which is the Euroliga in basketball and La Liga in football, will not go ahead.”

Real Madrid had been slated to host Eibar in a league tie on Friday night.

The quarantine measures look set to disrupt the team’s second-leg Champions League clash with Manchester City next week.

La Liga said that given the circumstances at Real Madrid and possible cases in other clubs, the league would be suspended for the next two rounds of games.

The Spanish league organization earlier in the week ordered all matches to be played without fans.

Such measures were not in place in the United Kingdom, where Atletico Madrid played in front of a full crowd against Liverpool at Anfield on Wednesday night.

The Covid-19 outbreak in Spain, which has hit the regions of Madrid, La Rioja and the Basque city of Vitoria particularly hard, has also reached the upper echelons of Spanish politics.

Irene Montero, the country’s equality minister, said on Thursday she had tested positive for the virus.

She and her partner Pablo Iglesias, one of the coalition government’s deputy leaders and head of the left-wing Podemos party the couple represent, will stay in self-quarantine for two weeks.

Madrid’s mayor, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, has urged residents of the Spanish capital to restrict their outdoor activities and only leave the house if strictly necessary. EFE


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