According to Daniella Matar of the Associated Press on Saturday, Serie A President Paolo Dal Pino announced he made the decision that five professional soccer games in Italy that were to be played this past weekend would be moved to May because of the Coronavirus. The virus has been one of the most deadliest viruses in quite sometime, with 3001 deaths reported so far.
A major person who played a role in the decision of postponing the games was Italian Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora. He gave Serie A two options. One was to play the games in empty stadiums or to postpone the games. Dal Pino selected the latter option. So far, there have been 1100 Italians who have contacted the Coronavirus. According to Inter Milan chief executive Giuseppe Marotta, there is a chance that the 2019-20 Serie A season may not even finish.
The five games which were delayed were Juventus versus Inter Milan, AC Milan versus Genoa, Parma versus Spal, Udinese versus Fiorentina and Sassuolo versus Brescia. All games have been moved to the weekend of May 13. Due to the change of schedule of these five Serie A games, the date of the Italian Cup has changed from May 13 to May 20. The most recognizable player in Serie A at the moment is Juventus’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
The game between Juventus and Inter Milan (known as Derby d’Italia) had the greatest significance. Juventus is in second place in the Serie A standings with a record of 19 wins, three losses and three draws for 60 points and Inter Milan is in third place in the Serie A standings with a record of 16 wins, two losses and six draws for 54 points. The Serie A leader at the moment is Lazio with 62 points.
Italian soccer is not the only organization impacted by Coronavirus. The FINA Diving World Series event scheduled for Beijing in March and the Paris Half Marathon has been cancelled, while the 2020 World Short Track Speed Skating Championships, originally scheduled for Seoul, South Korea from March 13 to 15, has been postponed. The International Olympic Committee has also had to move the locations of Olympic qualifying tournaments in women’s soccer and women’s basketball.