Sport

Rangers v Napoli rescheduled after Queen’s death ‘limits police resources’

Rangers’ Champions League tie with Napoli has been rescheduled for Wednesday 14 September, Uefa has announced. The tie has been moved back 24 hours due to “severe limitations on police resources and organisational issues” following the Queen’s death. Away fans will not be permitted for both the game in Glasgow or the return match in Naples “as a matter of sporting fairness”.

“Uefa today announced that the Champions League tie between Rangers and Napoli, originally to be played on Tuesday 13 September, has been rescheduled for Wednesday 14 September. This is due to the severe limitations on police resources and organisational issues related to the ongoing events surrounding the national mourning for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“Away fans will not be authorised at the games, and as a matter of sporting fairness, Rangers’ fans will not be authorised for the return legs in Naples. Uefa urges fans not to travel and to respect this extraordinary situation.”

The Super League play-off semi-finals will go ahead as planned on 16-17 September, it has been announced. Wigan will play Leeds at the DW Stadium on Friday 16 September and St Helens will face Salford at the Totally Wicked Stadium on Saturday on the Saturday.

Other governing bodies will continue to assess any possible impact the Queen’s funeral could have with scheduled fixtures and events.

All football fixtures in the UK were postponed this weekend, along with Friday and Saturday’s planned horse racing meetings, as a mark of respect. Many other sporting occasions went ahead, offering spectators and participants opportunities to pay their respects. In the Test match between England and South Africa at the Oval, players wore black armbands and there was a rendition of God Save the King.

On day three at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth, a two-minute period of silence was held, while there were also tributes ahead of the Super League play-off eliminator between Huddersfield and Salford as well as in rugby union, in Premiership matches.

The official mourning guidance, published by the government on Friday morning, stated there was no obligation on sports organisations to cancel or reschedule events. In a statement confirming the weekend’s postponements, the Premier League said further updates regarding fixtures during the period of mourning will “be provided in due course”.

The hearse carrying the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped with the Royal Standard of Scotland, left Balmoral for Edinburgh on Sunday.
The hearse carrying the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped with the Royal Standard of Scotland, left Balmoral for Edinburgh on Sunday. Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA

It is understood that position has not changed following confirmation The Queen’s funeral will take place at Westminster Abbey on 19 September, which will be a public Bank Holiday.

The next set of Premier League games are on Friday night, when Aston Villa host Southampton and Fulham travel to Nottingham Forest.

Discussions with Uefa are ongoing with regard to the scheduled European fixtures next week involving other British clubs in the Champions League, Europa League and European Conference League. As it stands, the scheduled English Football League programme is set to recommence on Tuesday.

However, it is understood there could be further resourcing issues, particularly in respect of policing.

Further guidance for matches and rugby activity during the remainder of the national mourning period is expected to follow as early as possible next week.

There will be no racing in Britain on the day of the Queen’s funeral. The British Horseracing Authority confirmed on Saturday evening that the 19 September meetings scheduled for Hamilton, Leicester, Warwick and Wolverhampton will be cancelled as a mark of respect.

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