Coronavirus Outbreak in Italy: Juventus vs AC Milan Pre-Match Conferences Called-Off Amid Fear of COVID-19 Spread
Coronavirus (Photo Credits: IANS)

Milan, February 28: Juventus have called off their pre-match press conference ahead of Sunday's Serie A clash against title-rivals Inter Milan because of the coronavirus outbreak in Italy. The match is among five Serie A games in the north of the country, which has been hardest hit by the virus, and will be played behind closed doors.

The other four are Udinese against Fiorentina, AC Milan at home to Genoa, Parma against SPAL and Sassuolo versus Brescia. "In compliance with the restrictions currently in force, Maurizio Sarri's conference, on the eve of the Juventus v Inter match, will not take place," the Serie A champions said in a statement. Juventus ‘Motivated and Enthusiastic’ Ahead of UEFA Champions League Clash Against Lyon, Says Defender Leonardo Bonucci.

Milan said "in compliance with the measures" they would not be holding a press conference before their game against Genoa in the San Siro on Sunday.

City rivals Inter Milan's Europa League game against Bulgarian club Ludogorets also took place behind closed doors in the San Siro on Thursday. Italy has the largest coronavirus outbreak in Europe with 650 people infected and 17 deaths.

Four Serie B matches will also be played behind closed doors -- Cittadella versus Cremonese; Chievo against Livorno; Venezia hosting Cosenza and Virtus Entella welcoming Crotone.

Meanwhile, a 22-year-old player from Italian third division club US Pianese is recovering in hospital in Siena after testing positive for coronavirus. "At the moment, excluding the infected player who is hospitalised, all the players, technicians and managers are in quarantine," the Tuscan club said in a statement.