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Premier League tells returning fans to avoid ‘excessive singing’

London (AFP) – Premier League chiefs have warned fans to avoid “excessive singing” and hugging as supporters return to English top-flight matches for the first time since March on Saturday.

West Ham will host this season’s first English top-flight match with spectators present when they welcome Manchester United.

Government restrictions mean just 2,000 fans will be allowed in to watch the match at the London Stadium, which kicks off at 1730 GMT.

Chelsea’s game against Leeds at Stamford Bridge, which starts at 2000 GMT, will also have 2,000 fans present.

The Premier League issued advice on safety measures on Saturday, including a warning for fans not to get carried away when their team scores a goal.

“Fans can celebrate but should remain socially distanced from people outside their social bubble,” said the advice.

“Hugging of other fans and high-fives should be avoided and fans are asked to be respectful to those around them, including avoiding excessive shouting or singing.”

The statement from the Premier League said clubs had missed the presence of fans, who have been absent since the coronavirus shutdown in March.

Supporters have to complete a health questionnaire and face temperature checks at the ground. They also have to wear face coverings.

Fans will sit in socially distanced seats, except for families or “household bubbles”.

London and Liverpool are among the areas to have been placed into the Tier-2 category based on Covid-19 rates, meaning up to 2,000 fans will be able to attend matches.

But clubs based in Tier-3 areas, such as Manchester and Birmingham, are still not allowed to open their gates.

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