The Three Lions have three international matches lined up for the coming months, as they play Iceland and Denmark away from Wembley. And, the England FA has set the friendly against Wales as their first international fixture to be played in front of fans.
Southgate’s team had not played an international match since November when they thumped Montenegro 7-0 at the Wembley stadium because of the coronavirus but will return to start the UEFA Nations League with an away fixture to Iceland and Denmark.
Iceland’s low COVID-19 rate not an excuse.
The FA had hope local fans would be allow into the stadium to watch the game against Iceland, as the country has a low Covid-19 infection rate, with just 10 corona virua related deaths compared to the UK ‘s 45,951. In contrast, Iceland only has a reported 1,861 confirmed case since the pandemic struck.
UEFA’S strong stand
Moreso, Denmark also has a relatively low Covid-19 death and infection rate compared to the rest of Europe. UEFA has refused to take any chances to allow fans into these games despite reported low infection rate, instead has placed strict protocol in place for the return of football at the international stage next month, one of which stipulates that games are to be played behind closed doors.
Consequently, with the Champions League round of 16 and final still to be played, UEFA will inevitably apply its protocol on all of these fixtures as the Champions League resumes in 10 days.
Doors set to open at Wembley
However, the English FA has penned down the friendly against Ryan Gigg’s Wales as its first chance to in front of its fans, as the UK Government has announced plans to partially open its stadium by October 1 in a bid for the expected return of fans.