Premier League fans set to face random spot-checks for their Covid-19 status at stadiums when the season kicks-off this week
- The Premier League season kicks-off on Friday with Arsenal playing Brentford
- Fans are returning to stadiums properly following the easing of restrictions
- The experience will be different though, with fans set to be spot-checked
- Supporters must be prepared to show they’re vaccinated or have a negative test
The Premier League has announced fans are set to be subject to random spot-checks of their Covid-19 status at some grounds in the opening few weeks of the new season.
The 2021-22 campaign, with supporters returning to stadiums following the easing of coronavirus restrictions, kicks off on Friday when Brentford host Arsenal.
In a statement released on Monday regarding matchday protocols, the Premier League said fans going to games should be prepared to show they have been fully vaccinated or have received a negative lateral flow test in the previous 48 hours, via their NHS Covid pass through the NHS app or website link.
Premier League fans could be stopped as part of random spot-checks at grounds this season
The 2020/21 Premier League season kicks-off on Friday with Arsenal playing Brentford
And it said: ‘Initially, in the first few matchdays of the season, supporters can expect the introduction of random spot-checks for ticket holders at some grounds as we establish the required processes so clubs and fans are prepared for all match attenders to have their Covid-19 status checked upon arrival, should it become mandatory.’
The League also said fans must comply with a supporter code of conduct, and stressed the importance of wearing masks in indoor areas, avoiding close contact with people you do not know and following one-way signage around stadiums.
The statement added: ‘Even though the nation is reopening, the Government has made it clear that this pandemic is still far from over.
‘It is possible the safety measures for matches could be subject to change at short notice. Fans should continue to follow the latest public health guidance and guidance from their club.
Stadiums might be back open but the coronavirus is still having an effect on the experience
Full capacity crowds are set to flood back into the grounds this weekend when the action starts
‘However, even in these uncertain times we are optimistic that by continuing to work together with fans, supporter groups, football stakeholders, national Government and local authorities everyone can enjoy full and vibrant stadiums while staying safe from Covid-19.
‘The Premier League will continue consulting with all key stakeholders, including the Football Supporters’ Association, and will be running a series of fan-engagement campaigns to help all ticket-holders ensure they are match-ready.’
The Government swept away restrictions on capacity limits on July 19, and these are now decided at local level.
There remains uncertainty over whether so-called ‘vaccine passports’ might be introduced – either across the board or at venues holding 20,000 or more spectators – from the end of September.