Stadiums in the top tier of Italian football will be able to welcome a maximum of 5,000 fans for the next two match days after clubs voted to introduce tougher measures to combat the spread of COVID-19.

It was agreed recently that outdoor stadiums in Italy would be limited to 50% capacity, but restrictions will now be even tighter in light of the “exponential growth” in COVID-19 cases over the past few days.

Lega Serie A, the governing body for the top flight of Italian football, said that the 5,000 capacity limit will be in place from January 15 to February 5. No away tickets will be sold to avoid the potential spread of COVID-19 from city to city.

Lega Serie A said the decision has been taken in response to a request from Prime Minister Mario Draghi. The league added that the move demonstrates its willingness to protect the health of the public.

The latest measures were announced before the weekend’s round of fixtures, which have been going ahead at 50% capacity. The new measures have been introduced with Serie A having reported almost 100 positive cases of COVID-19, with almost 200,000 cases reported across the country on Saturday alone.

Fans are required to wear face masks while inside Serie A stadiums and last month it was announced that supporters attending sporting events in Italy must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

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