Leeds United Supporters Trust responds as Premier League confirms decision on away fans for games against Southampton and West Brom
Leeds United fans will not be permitted to attend their side's final away game of the season.
The Premier League confirmed on Wednesday that visiting supporters will not feature in the last two fixtures of the season, a midweek away trip to Southampton and the season finale at Elland Road against West Brom, when a number of home fans are expected to return.
Supporters will be back in stadia for the final two rounds, in a reduced capacity, subject to the government easing lockdown restrictions as per their current plan. A decision is to be announced no later than May 10.
A statement from the Premier League said: "The Premier League today confirmed the final two match rounds of the 2020/21 season will be limited to home fans, subject to the government easing lockdown restrictions.
"The Premier League last week confirmed fixtures have been rescheduled to provide an opportunity for each club to host one home game with supporters before the end of the season. Match Round 37 will now be played on Tuesday 18 and Wednesday May 19 with the final matches of the season kicking off at 4pm on Sunday May 23, as planned.
"Following consultation with clubs, it was agreed matches would not be open to away supporters due to varying operational challenges across the league and the need to deliver a consistent approach, while maximising the opportunity for home-fan attendance.
"The safety and security of supporters is of paramount importance. Clubs have a proven track record of providing Covid-safe environments and have operational plans in place ready to safely welcome supporters back to their stadiums.
"Fans have been greatly missed at Premier League matches and this marks a key step towards full stadiums, including away fans, from the start of the 2021/22 season."
Leeds United Supporters Trust say the Premier League decision is an understandable one but the goal must be a full return by the start of next season in mid August.
"The safety of fans remains the number one priority, and in the first instance this will be more easily managed with only home supporters," said a spokesperson.
"Our aim is to ensure a full return to stadia by the start of next season and if this delay in away fans returning helps to secure that, then it's a necessary step."
The last time Whites supporters were able to watch their team in the flesh was the game against Huddersfield Town at Elland Road in March of last year.Leeds have played just one game in front of fans this season, when around 2,000 Chelsea supporters attended the Stamford Bridge clash due to the Covid-19 guidelines in place for London at the time of the fixture.The last time Whites supporters were able to watch their team in the flesh was the game against Huddersfield Town at Elland Road in March of last year.