‘We may have to accept behind-closed-doors’ - Ipswich boss Lambert on potential resumption of 2019/20 season

PUBLISHED: 17:13 06 April 2020

Paul Lambert accepts the season may need to be finished behind closed doors. Photo: Steve Waller

Paul Lambert accepts the season may need to be finished behind closed doors. Photo: Steve Waller

Stephen Waller

Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert still hopes to finish the season in front of supporters but accepts the campaign may need to conclude in empty stadiums.

Football throughout the world is suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak, with the 2019/20 campaign in England now on hold indefinitely until it’s safe for players to return to action.

Lambert, who has repeatedly stressed the need for the current season to be finished, rather than simply cancelling the campaign, believes behind-closed-doors may ultimately be the only option available.

“There are a few reasons this season has to finish,” the Town boss said.

“For us, we have a good chance to be involved in the promotion race and for football in general, there are too many questions left to answer for the season to be null and void.

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“In an ideal world, we will finish the season with supporters in stadiums. The timescale is the problem, we just don’t know when we will be able to start again.

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“We may have to accept that we play behind closed doors when the season resumes. I don’t like that. Football is for the fans and I can guarantee you that it won’t feel the same if you are winning games and lifting trophies if there are no fans there.

“Liverpool have waited 30 years to win the League. Imagine them celebrating at Anfield with no one there.

“People’s lives are more important than football though and if it means we have to go down the closed doors route, we will just have to accept it.”

The Blues were sitting 10th in League One when football was suspended, seven points behind the final play-off places with the majority of the sides above them holding at least one game in hand.

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