BREAKING NEWS
This content is not available in your region

'Our only virus is PSG': Fans defy coronavirus stadium closure in Paris

Comments
PSG supporters chant as they gather prior a Champions League round of 16 second leg soccer match between Paris-Saint-Germain and Borussia Dortmund at the Parc des Princes stad
PSG supporters chant as they gather prior a Champions League round of 16 second leg soccer match between Paris-Saint-Germain and Borussia Dortmund at the Parc des Princes stad   -   Copyright  Christophe Ena/Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved
Text size Aa Aa

Paris Saint-Germain fans amassed outside the club's stadium to cheer on the players before the Champions League last-16 game against Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday.

The match at Parc des Princes was played in an empty stadium because of the coronavirus outbreak. Many sports and other events around the world have been affected by the virus, leading to sporting events being held without any fans.

Despite not being allowed inside, around 3,000 PSG fans gathered to show their support outside the Parc des Princes.

After meeting a couple of hours before the game had started, they walked to the stadium as they sang and cheered, letting off flares when the team bus arrived and enveloping it in a thick pinkish-red smoke.

They were allowed to place three banners inside the stadium, the largest of which read: “Our Only Virus is PSG.”

Images of the fans chanting and singing outside was shown on the giant screen inside the stadium, so that the players could see the level of support outside. PSG trailed 2-1 from the first leg in Germany.

As the match kicked off at 9 p.m. local time, fans outside let off fireworks which fizzed into the night sky.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved
France Soccer Champions League Virus OutbreakCopyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reservedChristophe Ena

The fans continued to sing during the first half of the match, which in some ways resembled a loud training session.

Voices of players and coaches reverberated inside the ground as they encouraged each other or shouted instructions, or when the referee stepped in to talk to players.

PSG coach Thomas Tuchel spoke shortly before the game about the feeling of playing in an empty stadium.

“It's weird, it's horrible,” he said on BFM TV. “I know there are more important things than football ... but the most important thing in football is the relationship between the fans and the players.”

For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia.

The vast majority of people recover from the new virus. According to the WHO, people with mild illness recover in about two weeks. Those with more severe illness may take three to six weeks to recover.

Euronews is no longer accessible on Internet Explorer. This browser is not updated by Microsoft and does not support the last technical evolutions. We encourage you to use another browser, such as Edge, Safari, Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.