City confirm fans will not return to Carrow Road this season
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Norwich City have urged supporters to continue following the government's Covid-19 restrictions, as promotion celebrations edge closer for the Championship's dominant leaders.
City have released a statement confirming that there will be no supporters allowed at Carrow Road for the remaining three home matches of the season, or for the away games at QPR and Barnsley - but that work to ensure that is different for next season continues.
The government's roadmap laying out the UK's recovery from the coronavirus pandemic reached its next stage on Monday when pubs and restaurants were allowed to welcome customers outside in groups of six and non-essential retail stores re-opened, with social distancing remaining in place.
The next stage is due to be the 'rule of six' ending on Monday, May 17, with the relaxing of rules including up to 10,000 spectators being allowed at outdoor seated venues such as football stadiums.
This will be over a week after Norwich finish their season at Barnsley on Saturday, May 8 - unless the highly unlikely scenario of dropping into the play-offs was to happen.
However, promotion and potentially title celebrations could be in the next two weeks, with home victories over Bournemouth and title rivals Watford on Saturday and Tuesday respectively guaranteed to seal both successes.
The Canaries have released an update in a statement this morning, saying: "Following a recent update from the government and dialogue with relevant governing bodies, it is with regret that the club can now also confirm that no supporters will be permitted to attend any of the club’s remaining Sky Bet Championship fixtures in the 2020-21 season.
"The club would like to take this opportunity to remind supporters of the importance of continuing to follow the latest government guidelines, following City’s remaining games remotely and from afar.
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"Norwich City’s digital channels will continue to provide comprehensive coverage of the remaining games of the season, with further details to be announced in due course.
"Over the coming period and in line with the government’s roadmap for moving out of national lockdown, the club will continue to work closely with its Safety Advisory Group, the Sports Ground Safety Authority and football governing bodies, with a view to bringing supporters back to events and matches at Carrow Road as soon as it is safe to do so."
City were one of the few clubs in England to welcome small attendances for some matches earlier this season, outside of lockdown scenarios.
There were 1,000 season tickets holders at Carrow Road for the 2-2 draw with Preston in September and also for the wins over Sheffield Wednesday, Nottingham Forest and Cardiff in December.
Chief operating officer, Ben Kensell, added: “We were all very proud of all of the hard work that went into our pilot fixtures with supporters earlier this season.
“From the get-go, we’ve been proactive and have explored all possibilities in doing what we can to get supporters back to Carrow Road, be that for pilot fixtures or live screening events.
“Over the summer months we’ll continue to work closely with the relevant governing bodies with a view to potentially making progress on a much-anticipated return of supporters to Carrow Road.”
City also confirmed that the process for refunding supporters who purchased home, away or junior memberships for this season will be completed by the end of this month.
- You can keep up-to-date with the Canaries' imminent Premier League return with the Eastern Daily Press, Norwich Evening News and Pinkun.com, including our Matchday Live blogs.
Our Canaries correspondents continue to follow Daniel Farke's team, home and away, and are working to bring you the best possible coverage during these frustrating times - as we all hope for the return of normality as soon as it's safe.