Excitement grows as Leicester City fans are set to return to stadiums
By Jayden Whitworth
Leicester City fans are eager to get back into stadiums as the much-anticipated reopening for live matches edges closer.
Football stadiums have been locked down for just over a year now and with the Government announcing the roadmap out of lockdown, fans will be encouraged by the prospect of stadiums reopening by the end of the season.
On February 22, the Government announced that outdoor, seated events can resume from May 17, allowing 10,000 people to attend or 25 per cent capacity, whichever is lower.
For Leicester City fans this means there is the potential of having 8,000 fans at the King Power Stadium for the curtain closer against Tottenham Hotspur on May 23.
Virtualised: Phil Holloway hosting one of his match day watchalongs.
It has been especially difficult for Leicester City fans as, unlike some teams, they have not had fans in at all this season.
As a result of Leicestershire’s high COVID-19 rates, its stadium was not able to reopen to limited capacity earlier in the season.
Phil Holloway, of Leicester Fan TV, said: “I think there has been a mental health impact for some fans.
“Obviously the bigger picture is that people have to be safe.
“I don’t for an instant want to go to the ground at the moment while coronavirus is still around.
“On the other hand, the fact they have broadcast all the games live on Sky and BT has been a bonus.
“In a way, that is one of the few things that you can look forward to and in a way Premier League football has kept us going in these lockdowns.
“Yes, of course we are all missing the experience, for me it’s going down with friends and family and having that chat before, during and after the match face to face with people.
“We are doing it online now; we are doing online watchalongs and Zoom calls, but it is not quite the same as meeting down there and sharing a pint and debating what you have just seen.”
Phil Holloway and others at Leicester Fan TV have done their best to keep the Leicester community together and engaged by running weekly match watchalongs and discussion with Foxes fans.