The epidemic is affecting sports events across the world, and the Super Eagles may also feel its effect when they take on the Leone Stars of Sierra Leone later this month.
Two Super Eagles stars may miss Nigeria’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Sierra Leone due to the fallout of the coronavirus.
Due to travel restrictions imposed on people living in Italy by the Italian Government, Ola Aina and William Troost Ekong may not feature in Nigeria’s doubleheader clash against Sierra Leone.
Italian Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte announced this week he is placing a travel ban in and out of the country. Only people with health issues, family emergencies and work-related issues are allowed to travel.
Aina plays for Torino, while Ekong plays for Udinese and it remains to be seen if they will be allowed to leave the country for the AFCON qualifier against Sierra Leone.
Torino is located in Turin, Northern Italy, and it is the region that is most affected by the virus in Italy. The same also applies to Udinese, which is in North-Eastern, Italy.
Italy is the European country with the highest number of cases affected by the coronavirus with over 9000 cases and 500 deaths.
This led to the suspension of sporting competitions in the country including the Italian Serie A. Italy is not the only country taking measures to contain the virus by banning fans from sporting events. A couple of Champions League games will also be played behind closed doors.
At the same time, the Spanish authorities have announced that La Liga games for the next two weeks will be played without fans due to the outbreak of the virus.
The Premier League banned pre-match handshakes, while Ligue 1 games will be played behind closed doors or with less than 1,000 fans.