Lithuania's top football and basketball officials say the government's planned ban on fans in stadiums is understandable because ensuring the safety of players and spectators is key.
Football and basketball officials say ban on fans in stadiums understandable
© DELFI / Josvydas Elinskas

Mindaugas Spokas, secretary general of the Lithuanian Basketball Federation, has described the planned measure as "logical and understandable".

"The government makes decisions to protect people. Everything is logical and understandable here," he told BNS on Monday.

Playing without fans will cause further losses to basketball clubs already hit by the coronavirus pandemic, but safety is paramount, according to Spokas.

If the Cabinet approves the proposed restrictions on Wednesday, Zalgiris Vilnius and Suduva Marijampole will play the season's final game of A Lyga, the top division of professional football in Lithuania, without fans.

Edgaras Stankevicius, secretary-general of the Lithuanian Football Federation, told BNS that would be a big loss.

"This is the final, decisive match," he told BNS. "The two strongest teams will be competing for the title of champions, so we'd want the fans of both sides to be able to watch the match."

Stankevicius added, however, that the measure is understandable in light of spiking coronavirus cases in Lithuania.

The Cabinet is expected to discuss on Wednesday a ban on spectators at professional sporting events. If approved, the ban will take effect on Friday.

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