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Napoli president calls for CL tie against Barca to be moved

SSC Napoli v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League
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The Champions League clash between Napoli and Barcelona should take place outside of Spain due to COVID-19 risks, says Aurelio De Laurentiis.

FC Barcelona were held to a 1-1 draw against Napoli at Stadio San Paolo in the first leg of the Champions League Last 16 back in February.

The second leg of the tie was then canceled due to the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus as football across the globe went into a brief pause.

By June, almost all the major leagues across Europe returned back in action as the threat of the virus went down.

In order to see out the 2019/20 season in the short timeframe, UEFA announced that quarter-finals and semi-finals of the Champions League, which would return in August, will now be played out as one-off matches in one venue.

A couple of Round of 16 fixtures still remain to be played, however, and those will take place in the original venues.

While the effect of the virus has reduced to a large extent, COVID-19 related cases in Spain have gone up in the past few days.

Napoli president De Laurentiis, therefore, has urged UEFA to move their upcoming clash against Barca away from Camp Nou.

He told Sky Sport Italia: “We hear doubts and fears coming from Spain. UEFA is indifferent, there is no one who knows how to run the shop.

“If they have decided that the Champions League is done in Portugal and the Europa League in Germany, I think we should play the return leg in Portugal or Germany.

“I don’t understand why we must stay in a city that has major problems.”