Serie A returns after three-month coronavirus shutdown | Inquirer Sports
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Serie A returns after three-month coronavirus shutdown

/ 11:21 AM June 21, 2020
Italy Soccer Serie A

FILE – Torino’s Sasa Lukic, center, celebrates after scoring the first goal of the game during the Italian Serie A soccer match between Juventus FC and Torino FC at the Allianz Stadium in Turin, Italy, Friday, May 3, 2019. (Alessandro Di Marco/ansa via AP)

Serie A resumed on Saturday after a three-month coronavirus shutdown as relegation-threatened Torino hosted Parma behind closed doors at Turin’s Stadio Olimpico.

The match was the first to kick off in Italy’s top flight since March 9, with the players observing minute’s silence before kick-off for the victims of COVID-19, which killed over 34,500 in Italy.

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But the first match after 103 days without top-flight football got off to a false start with the deflated ball having to be replaced after five seconds.

Four postponed games take place first this weekend with Bergamo club Atalanta hosting Sassuolo on Sunday and Inter Milan facing Sampdoria at the San Siro.

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“It is something beautiful because we go back to doing what we love, we are all excited and eager to shows what we can do on the pitch,” said Torino captain Andrea Belotti.

“There is great positivity, a sense of togetherness, we want to demonstrate what we have learned in the past few months.

“Now it’s time for action, not words.”

Torino are 15th in the table with ninth-placed Parma in the mix for Europa League football next season.

Champions Juventus return to their quest for a ninth consecutive title at Bologna on Monday, days after their Italian Cup final defeat to Napoli.

Maurizio Sarri’s side hold a one-point lead on second-placed Lazio, with Inter Milan are third, nine points adrift of the leaders.

In the battle for Champions League places Atalanta are fourth, three points ahead of Roma, with Napoli sixth a further six points adrift.

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At the bottom of the table SPAL and Brescia occupy the last two places and look destined to play in Serie B next season.

But five teams look set to battle to avoid the final relegation berth with just three points between Udinese in 14th position and 18th-placed Lecce.

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TAGS: coronavirus, Football, pandemic, Parma, serie a, Soccer, Sports, Torino
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