Whilst Old Trafford has a 76,000 spectator capacity, alterations have been made to the stadium so that it will be able to host 23,500 socially distanced fans once allowed by the government. As well as having spent the past two months making these changes, plans for temperature checks and staggered arrival times have also been put in place.
This ambitious move may be a bit ahead of its time however, given the news of a new national month-long lockdown commencing this week. Furthermore, PM Boris Johnson has said that spectators may not be able to return to live sport until Spring 2021. Supporters were initially supposed to be able to return to matches nationwide in a controlled fashion from October 2020, however these plans were scrapped when signs of a second Co-vid wave became apparent.
Collete Roche, United’s Chief Operating Officer told Sky Sports:
“It’s quite bemusing to understand why people can gather in other settings such as on an airplane or in a restaurant, or even in a cinema to watch football, when we know we’ve got the plans and the process is ready to deliver a match day here safely.”