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Rizzoli: Officials are also concerned about playing during a pandemic

Refereeing designator Nicola Rizzoli says that officials are also worried about playing amid coronavirus pandemic but claims that it will at least prevent players from gathering around a referee for protesting.

Club training returned this week, with the purpose to begin Series A matches from 13 or 20 June.

“We are ready for the season to restart and await news from the Government meeting on May 28,” Rizzoli told Rai Radio 1.

“As soon as we know exactly what the medical protocol is, we can begin to adopt the strategy to get back on the pitch. For now, it’s just suggestions, but the referees have been training for some time to keep up their fitness levels.”

Referees and layers are equally worried about resuming matches in the middle of a pandemic, admits Rizzoli.

“There is some worry, some issues that need to be resolved and we’re waiting to see how the various steps will be addressed to ensure we can resume in safety.”

“We officials have different concerns to clubs because we have 80 people coming from all over Italy and they will need to travel. It’s about being very careful indeed.”

The medical procedure for Series A matches states that players are not allowed to stay within two meters of the referee, which would conceivably reduce the habit of protesting players crowding around the official.

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“We have the opportunity to do something new after this emergency situation,” added Rizzoli.

“If we realize that protests are pointless and respect is fundamental, we could all benefit from that. Clearly that protests will have to be done differently to usual, as there has to be reciprocal respect of social distancing measures and a warning if not a yellow card if anyone breaches that.”

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