Wolves will have to play their first leg tie against Olympiacos as dated, after their plea to postpone the clash got rejected by UEFA despite confirmed reports that owner Evangelos Marinakis has the virus. The game will be played behind closed doors which follows what the rest of Europe are doing.
Wolverhampton Wanderers are having a season of the club's lifetime, with them juggling between the Europa League and Premier League brilliantly. They currently sit 6th in the league threatening Manchester United and Chelsea with a good possibility of sliding into the top 4. But despite the club's wishes to stay away from any “unnecessary risk” of the deadly epidemic of coronavirus after it was revealed that Olympiacos owner Evangelos Marinakis has the virus.
However, Nuno Espirito Santo and team’s admirers were willing to risk it all as a total of 1000 tickets were already sold but since then the Greek government has declared that the game will be played behind closed doors. This follows what Italy, Spain, Germany and France are doing as Europe takes utmost care to try and contain the spread of the virus.
Influenced by Wolves’ approach, Spanish side Getafe are also refusing to travel to Italy for their tie against Inter Milan, after the President in Italy, recently suspended Serie A till 3rd April. As reported by the BBC, Wolves have complied with UEFA and have agreed upon travelling to Greece, only half-heartedly though and their statement revealed that the club are concerned with the way UEFA has handled the situation.
"There are some things that are more important than football. The good health of our pack and the general public is one of them. Our position is that the trip poses an unnecessary risk to our players, staff, supporters and the families of all who travel, at such critical and uncertain times. Our concern is also for our opponents, whose players and staff have today been tested, and will now be expected to play their part in an important fixture, under the difficult and challenging circumstances of their owner suffering with the virus," the statement read.
"There is also disappointment that the match will be played without home and away supporters, as that is part of what makes European competition so special, as well as the fact our fans have already contended with similar obstacles on our Europa League journey already this season. We believe that there are some things that are more important than football, and that the good health of our pack and the general public is one of them. However, we respect the decision of UEFA and the integrity of the competition, and we will travel tomorrow to Greece to play the fixture."