QPR have decided to limit the capacity of part of their stadium for their next home game to create a socially distanced space and reassure fans concerned about Covid-19.
Blackburn Rovers will visit the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium tomorrow night, but the Hoops have decided to limit numbers in the School End Lower to reassure fans who had not returned to home matches this season.
The decision was made in response to supporters who informed the club they did not feel comfortable watching matches in a full stadium where social distancing was not strictly enforced.
The requests also included the suggestion of trialling it during a Tuesday night match when attendances would be lower, so as not to prevent others from watching the game.
Rangers’ Head of Operations, Joshua Scott, said: “You see the social media comments, you see the people that do write in, and it’s not that they’ve complained, because they do understand that every venue in the country is back to 100% capacity, with limited no social distancing.
“So, it was just to try and see how this goes, and if we can even get a handful of people come back for the first time because they feel a bit more comfortable then it is absolutely a win for us.”
The School End Lower will be at 30% capacity, with social distancing more strictly enforced, and supporters will be asked to wear face coverings when not seated.
This decision was announced on the club’s Twitter feed to largely positive feedback from fans, who felt this was an important decision to help fans return to games.
Some have questioned the decision, wondering why those who were shielding or concerned about the virus would want to go to a football match, rather than just stay at home.
Scott said: “It was great to see a lot of comments from people who thought it worked well for people that they know and there were one or two people saying that this made them feel more comfortable, so I think that’s fantastic.
“People were for it, or people were against it, but I think the restrictions around Covid are always going to divide people.
“I’m not sure if people misunderstood and thought we were changing an area of a stand to make it social distancing, rather than using an unused area of the ground.
“Hopefully they see that it’s just giving people a chance to come and attend a game, using an area that wasn’t used anyway.”
QPR are also currently working on a new training ground in Heston, after planning permission was granted by Hounslow Council and you can read the full story here.
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Featured image credit: Zakarie Faibris