Why Doncaster Rovers boss is cautious over football's recovery despite prospect of fans returning

Darren Moore believes the full extent of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on football clubs will not be discovered until supporters are allowed back into stadiums.

Friday, 18th September 2020, 2:53 pm
Updated Friday, 18th September 2020, 2:53 pm

Rovers will be involved in a pilot event this weekend among the first steps towards crowds being permitted into stadiums potentially as early as next month. One thousand people will be allowed to watch their trip to Charlton Athletic on Saturday.

While welcoming the moves towards the return of fans, Moore thinks only when larger crowds are permitted will clubs be able to gauge just how many supporters are willing and able to watch their teams again.

“Until we are able to get supporters back in, we won’t see the damage that has been done out there,” he said.

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“At the moment we’ve not had any real data of how this has affected things. How many fans were put on furlough and then maybe made redundant?

“We don’t know.

“Hopefully it’s none and everyone can get back into the club.

“If we do get everyone back in, it certainly keeps things flowing.

“For any supporters watching their club, it makes their week. They work extremely hard through the week and coming to the game on Saturday is their social activity, it’s time to bond with other fans. It’s a whole round holistic approach, mentally and physically for supporters to see their team.

“We at the football club would endorse them coming back but I must stress, only if it is safe and well to do so.

“If that was the case, we’d welcome them back tomorrow.”

Moore admits he is looking forward to the experience of this weekend’s pilot at The Valley and expects Charlton supporters to play their part.

“It’s 1000 supporters that are being let in and I’m sure they’ll be raucous just because of the excitement that they’ve got the opportunity to see live football,” he said.

“I’m sure the staff and the players will all welcome having them back in there as well so I’m looking forward to it.

“I think it will make a difference, having 1,000 people in there. Even though The Valley is quite a vast ground in terms of size and space and capacity, with 1,000 in there I think there will be quite a noise because of that excitement.”

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