Barcelona-Napoli to be played behind closed doors

Following an initial Generalitat de Catalunya recommendation, Barcelona's game with Napoli will be held without fans at the ground.

Barcelona salvaged a draw in the first leg of its Champions League tie against Napoli   -  Getty Images

The Champions League last-16 second leg between Barcelona and Napoli will be played behind closed doors due to the ongoing threat of the coronavirus.

The regional government of Catalonia had on Monday recommended the match go ahead on March 18 but without fans present at Camp Nou.

The decision was confirmed by Barca following a meeting between club officials and members of the Generalitat de Catalunya, including secretary general of sport Gerard Figueras.

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Public health secretary Joan Guix said on Tuesday: "This is a decision that has been taken strictly for health reasons."

The announcement comes after Italy suspended all sporting activity until April 3 as part of a nationwide lockdown aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19.

Prime minister Giuseppe Conte said on Monday that all of Italy's citizens would be restricted from travel barring only that which is essential for work, health reasons or emergencies.

It had already been confirmed that Atalanta's match with Valencia at Mestalla on Tuesday will be played behind closed doors, while the same measures have been taken for Paris Saint-Germain's clash with Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday.

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