Leeds United issue update regards options for season ticket holders

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LEEDS United will make rebate options available to 2020-21 season ticket holders once the picture becomes clearer as to when fans can return to Elland Road.

United's supporters have been unable to watch their team in action at Elland Road since the 2-0 win at home to Huddersfield Town on March 7 due to the country's battle against coronavirus.

After a 15-week pause to the end of last season in the fight against COVID-19, United's last nine games of the 2019-20 Championship campaign were all played behind closed doors including five contests at Elland Road.

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Now back in the top tier of English football for the first time in 16 years having stormed to the Championship title, all Premier League games are also currently being played inside stadiums without any fans.

STILL NO FANS: At Elland Road, above, or any other Premier League grounds. Photo by George Wood/Getty Images.STILL NO FANS: At Elland Road, above, or any other Premier League grounds. Photo by George Wood/Getty Images.
STILL NO FANS: At Elland Road, above, or any other Premier League grounds. Photo by George Wood/Getty Images.

An update posted by Leeds United on the club's website on Wednesday read: "Leeds United would like to take this opportunity to reassure 2020/21 Season Ticket Holders that the club will be making rebate options available to supporters once there is more clarity on when fans are able to return to Elland Road.

"With our opening home game of the Premier League season taking place this weekend, the club remain dedicated to working with the relevant authorities and fan groups to get supporters back in the stands as soon as possible. Further details will be announced in due course.

"Regulations for the phased return of fans to stadiums will be determined by Government and Premier League guidelines with the main objective to enable as many fans as possible to attend matches but ensuring the health and safety of fans and staff above all.

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"Once this process is in place, the club will immediately announce plans for rebate options which will include a full refund or the opportunity to use the outstanding balance to secure your Season Ticket for the following campaign.

"In the meantime, please stay safe and thank you for your continued support."

The Premier League announced on Friday that clubs would defer from holding any more test events which are now capped at one thousand spectators.

The Premier League believe measures are already available which would allow the safe return of fans.

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A Premier League spokesperson said: "The Premier League has written to Government to express its concern at the decisions taken to restrict, and potentially delay, the planned programme for the return of fans to football stadiums.

"With test events now capped at 1,000 supporters, we believe they will not provide any opportunity to properly test and evaluate measures designed to maximise fan safety.

"Therefore, Premier League clubs will defer holding test events until a sufficient number of fans are allowed back to enable thorough trials to take place.

"At 1,000 supporters, not only would there be little to learn from a test event, but each match would be heavily loss-making.

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"For each month of the season without fans, more than £100 million is lost to football across the leagues, with consequent damage to the local and national economy.

"It also harms the employment prospects of more than 100,000 people whose jobs depend on matchday activities.

"Our clubs have already prepared test events and can offer larger scale trials to prove it is possible to produce bio-secure, safe environments, as was proved through the successful delivery of Project Restart.

"The Premier League recognises the ambition of Government’s Operation Moonshot and will support the project’s objectives to get fans back into stadiums.

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"However, we believe measures are already available which would allow the safe return of fans and should also be activated now.

"As the Government begins its review of the 1 October date for the return of spectators to sport, the Premier League asks that the high safety standards which can be achieved by our clubs are fully taken into account before any decision is taken and that sport is not left behind other industries."

In the EFL, ten clubs will be permitted to admit spectators into league matches this weekend as part of the ongoing ‘return of fans’ pilot programme.

As per the current guidance, crowds will be capped at a capacity of 1,000 as discussions continue with the Government about return for supporters’ in greater numbers post October 1, 2020.

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The move to extend the programme follows a successful pilot staged at Cambridge United last week when fans were in attendance at a professional football match for the first time since March.

EFL chair, Rick Parry said: “It’s encouraging that we are in a position to move forward with the next phase of the pilot programme and give a small number of our clubs the opportunity to welcome back up to a 1,000 fans this week.

“The health and well-being of supporters and their wider communities remains the priority, but as we showed at Cambridge, social distancing can be applied safely.

"By extending across more EFL clubs we hope to further demonstrate that the measures developed can allow fans to return in greater numbers from as early as next month.

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“The requirement to welcome spectators back through turnstiles has not diminished in any way, the financial challenges facing EFL clubs have been explained on numerous occasions, they are substantial and a problem that requires immediate solutions."

Culture secretary Oliver Dowden said: "I know that many fans are eager to return to football and that jobs depend on this too, so fans will welcome news that the EFL will be running number capped, covid secure, and socially distanced pilots this weekend.

"This will help us build the evidence base to see how we can return fans safely in greater numbers as soon as it is safe to do so."

The ten EFL games as part of this weekend's pilot are:


Luton Town v Derby County

Norwich City v Preston North End

Middlesbrough v AFC Bournemouth

League One

Charlton Athletic v Doncaster Rovers

Blackpool v Swindon Town

Shrewsbury Town v Northampton Town

Hull City v Crewe Alexandra

League Two

Forest Green Rovers v Bradford City

Carlisle United v Southend United

Morecambe v Cambridge United

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