Juventus’ Clash With Napoli Abandoned in Bizarre Circumstances Due to Coronavirus Restrictions

Juventus' Clash With Napoli Abandoned in Bizarre Circumstances Due to Coronavirus Restrictions

Juventus could be handed a 3-0 win over Napoli in Serie A due to their opponents’ inability to fulfil the fixture.

Napoli are currently unable to leave the Italian region of Campania after midfielders Piotr Zielinski and Eljif Elmas tested positive for coronavirus. The local health authority initially didn’t advise against traveling for the game despite insisting the squad should self-isolate, but went on to prohibit this too on Sunday.

But Serie A officials maintained the fixture should still go ahead as other sides have been able to play despite returning positive tests, and Napoli had not been able to prove their inability to put out a team.

So what happened? Napoli didn’t travel for the fixture at the Allianz Stadium because they literally couldn’t. But Juventus did.

Yep, Andrea Pirlo’s side rocked up to the ground as normal, the social media guys put out lineup graphics ahead of a game they knew couldn’t and wouldn’t occur, and everyone just played along in order to prove they were willing to play. They wanted those three points on offer by default.

While Juventus were going about their business, there was near radio silence from Napoli, who only announced that manager Gennaro Gattuso hadn’t tested positive. No mention of whether they had traveled for the game was made. But everyone (everyone) was aware the squad was already self-isolating.

And so, as the match was scheduled to kick-off, Juventus chairman Andrea Agnelli and the club’s head of medical department Luca Stefanini held a press conference to try and address the situation, but ended up muddying the waters even more.

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The full and confusing presser can be found on Juve’s Twitter account, but basically, the club argue that they stuck to the Italian Federation’s guidelines regarding coronavirus testing and reporting, and that Napoli were in breach of them. As was reported earlier in the week, Juventus believe that they will be awarded the three points from this match.

But given the unprecedented era we currently live in, who knows how this messy situation will end.

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