Behind closed doors (sport)

The term "behind closed doors" is used in several sports, primarily association football,[1] to describe matches played where spectators are not allowed in the stadium to watch. The reasons for this may include punishment for a team found guilty of a certain act in the past, stadium safety issues, public health concerns, or to prevent potentially dangerous clashes between rival supporters. In football it is predicated by articles 7, 12 and 24 of FIFA's disciplinary code.[2]

Empty stadium in Dresden, Germany.

Crowdless games are a rare although not unheard-of occurrence in sports. When they do occur, it is usually the result of events beyond the control of the teams or fans, such as weather-related concerns, public health concerns, or wider civil disturbances unrelated to the game. For instance, the COVID-19 pandemic caused many sports leagues around the world to be played behind closed doors.[3][4]



In Brazil, the practice of games without public access is known as "closed gates" (in Portuguese, portões fechados), even referred as such in the Brazilian Football Confederation's rulebook.[5] Once it was applied to a whole tournament: two rounds of the Campeonato Catarinense second division in 2014 were behind closed doors because the competing clubs did not deliver the security checks for their stadiums.[6] Sanitary reasons dictated the restriction in 2009, where two games of the Série D were played behind closed doors due to the H1N1 flu pandemic.[7]


The French league has a tough line on misconduct. Each smoke grenade sent to the pitch results in a fine, which can then result in playing behind closed doors. If the crowd isn't managed, the club may also be punished. Almost every season, a handful of matches are played behind closed doors.

North AmericaEdit

"Behind closed doors" or "crowdless" matches in the major North American sports leagues have historically been exceedingly rare. Most professional sports in the United States have been "gate-driven leagues": they relied upon ticket sales and other game-day expenditures such as parking and concessions for the majority of their income, and going crowdless would deprive the leagues of that revenue, while still leaving the leagues responsible for the salaries of the participants. Broadcasting revenues have only in the 21st century risen to become a revenue source substantial enough to offset the loss of ticket sales, and even then it has only been such for the highest level major leagues. Amateur leagues also have the ability to survive crowdless, given their much lower expenses; at the recreational level, most games do not draw crowds. In between, professional minor leagues and fringe leagues cannot practically operate crowdless; Minor League Baseball and the Canadian Football League both cancelled their summer 2020 seasons rather than attempt to go crowdless (the CFL has substantial television revenue, but the league had lost money even with that revenue, making it impossible to operate without ticket sales).

Hooliganism has been less of a factor in North American sports than in the rest of the world. Local law enforcement, private security contractors working for either the team or a league, and national agencies such as the United States Department of Homeland Security take large roles in preventing situations of fan violence before they can occur by restricting access to known troublesome fans either at the gate or at the stage of selling tickets (such as "do not sell" lists), along with heavy restrictions on bringing in items and screening with metal detectors and pat-down searches where bringing in a weapon or explosive device can result in immediate arrest and permanent banishment from a venue, and other examples such as the "clear bag" policy, which only allows spectators to bring in bags that can be easily seen through.

Teams also have incentive to prevent fan violence due to forfeit rules which come with penalties to their records and playoff positioning, and league sanctions such as fines and the stripping of draft picks due to neglecting to create a safe environment for players, which in turn can affect teams for years beyond a violent event. Also sporting events in North America are considered to be more of a family-friendly and uniting affair, as sports fans tend to respect each other as fans of a common sport. In other countries around the world, sports matches are sometimes proxies for bitter and long-standing ethnic, political, and religious divisions; this is less so in the United States, where the broad variety of sports options manifests as different ethnic groups preferring different sports, reducing the chance at intercultural rivalry within a single sport.

Furthermore, the much larger geographical footprint of the North American sports leagues mean that even fierce rivals are often based hundreds or even thousands of miles apart. For example, while the Dallas Cowboys are considered to be the bitter rivals of every other team in the NFC East, their nearest division rival is based almost 1,100 miles (1,800 km) from the Dallas metropolitan area by air, and over 1,300 miles (2,100 km) from Dallas by road. Fans elsewhere in the world can easily travel to most if not all of their league's stadiums by road or by train, and bus and rail carriers have evolved there to cater to the expected demand. In contrast, fans of the North American sports leagues would need to travel by air if they wanted to attend most of their team's road games. In contrast to the local derbies of European soccer, some North American teams in the same metropolitan areas, especially in baseball and (gridiron) football, are separated into opposite conferences or leagues so that they are among the least frequent opponents on their schedules, inhibiting the development of a crosstown rivalry and allowing fans in a metropolitan area to support both teams with minimal conflict. Even if many thousands of fans suddenly had the means and inclination to do that on a regular basis, the North American commercial aviation industry at present would not have sufficient spare capacity to accommodate them – even events such as the Super Bowl which draw the most interest from fans willing to travel cause a major logistical challenge for airlines and airport authorities. As a result, unlike in most smaller and more densely populated countries, teams are typically not required to (and typically do not) set aside whole sections of their stadiums for opposing fans. The lack of dedicated sections for opposing fans creates even further disincentive for them to travel to away games.

All of these reduce the chances of hooliganism, eliminate the need to segregate fans from opposing teams, and ultimately negate the threat of a closed door game due as a consequence of fan violence. In rare circumstances where a serious incident has occurred (such the 2004 Pacers–Pistons brawl in the NBA), sports authorities have leaned toward identifying and excluding the specific people involved as opposed to indiscriminately punishing the wider, law-abiding fan base. In contrast to the rest of the world where "behind closed doors" games are given out as penalties for previous violations or to prevent potential violence (stadium safety issues, checkered history of rival supporters), such occurrences in North America have happened for entirely different reasons.


1980–81 European Cup Winners' CupEdit

After rioting by fans in the first leg against Castilla in Spain, West Ham United were forced to play the second leg at Upton Park in October 1980 to an empty stadium.[8]

1982–83 European CupEdit

After rioting by fans in a semifinal at Anderlecht in Belgium the previous April, Aston Villa were forced to begin their defence of the European Cup at an empty Villa Park in September 1982, with the match kicking off at 2:30 pm on a Wednesday afternoon.[9]

1987–88 European CupEdit

After UEFA ban resulting from the incidents in the match between Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in a semifinal in Spain the previous April, Real Madrid were forced to play the match at home against Napoli in the European Cup at an empty Santiago Bernabeu Stadium on 16 September 1987.

2007 Italian footballEdit

As a result of a policeman being killed during rioting at a Serie A match between Catania and Palermo on 2 February, the Italian Football Federation suspended all Italian matches indefinitely. Subsequently, matches resumed but many clubs were ordered to play their games behind closed doors until their stadiums met with updated security regulations.

2009 Italian footballEdit

Juventus were ordered to play a home game behind closed doors after their fans had racially abused Internazionale striker Mario Balotelli during a 1–1 Serie A draw in April 2009.[10]

2009 Davis Cup match in SwedenEdit

In March 2009, Sweden's Davis Cup tennis team was slated to host a qualifying match against Israel's team in the city of Malmö. The local authorities in Malmö, particularly the city's then-Mayor, did not want an Israeli team to play there and pushed to cancel the match. When the Swedish Tennis Association noted that a cancellation would result in Sweden suffering a forfeit loss and being eliminated from the Davis Cup altogether, it was agreed that the Sweden-Israel match would be played without spectators on "security grounds". Rioting outside the arena led to numerous arrests, and in the end Sweden lost to Israel and saw their 2009 Davis Cup run end anyway.[citation needed]

2009–10 UEFA Europa LeagueEdit

FC Dinamo București had to play two home games in European competitions behind closed doors after their match against FC Slovan Liberec on 25 August 2009 was abandoned in the 88th minute due to a pitch invasion by Dinamo fans.

2009 Mexico ClausuraEdit

During the penultimate round of league games all teams had to play with closed doors due to the H1N1 swine flu outbreak in infected cities. Several games taking place in areas which were badly affected by the outbreak were also played behind closed doors the following week. Games behind closed doors have been played regularly as a penalty for bad behavior of fans in Mexico, most recently an Apertura 2015 game in which Atlas hosted Querétaro at Estadio Jalisco because of last season quarterfinal game in which Atlas fans invaded the pitch against their hated rivals Guadalajara.[11]

2010–11 Heineken CupEdit

In rugby union, the 2010–11 Heineken Cup pool stage match between Edinburgh and Castres at Murrayfield was played behind closed doors on 20 December 2010. The match was originally scheduled for 19 December, but was postponed due to heavy snow in Edinburgh that covered the pitch and created major access issues for potential spectators. The competition organiser, European Rugby Cup, decided to hold the rescheduled match behind closed doors to remove any possible danger to spectators attempting to travel to the match.[12]

Turkish football in 2011–12Edit

Starting with the 2011–12 season, the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) instituted a modified version of this rule. The penalty for a team sanctioned for crowd violence is now a ban on both ticket sales to, and attendance by, males over age 12 (as spectators). Women, and children under age 12 of either sex, are admitted free. The first game under the new rule took place on 20 September 2011, when Fenerbahçe hosted Manisaspor at Şükrü Saracoğlu Stadium in Istanbul. Over 41,000 women and children attended the match (plus a small number of men who had sneaked into the stadium). The experiment was so successful that the TFF planned to require that teams allocate an unspecified number of free tickets for women and children at all future club matches.[13] Shortly thereafter, the TFF stated that it would reimburse clubs for free tickets given to women and children for regular league games (i.e., games not subject to crowd restrictions), and increased the upper age limit for "children" for the purposes of free ticketing to 15.[14]

Ajax–AZ, 2011–12 KNVB CupEdit

A match between Eredivisie clubs Ajax and AZ in the fourth round of the 2011–12 KNVB Cup was replayed behind closed doors at Ajax's home ground, Amsterdam Arena, on 19 January 2012.

In the original match, held at the same venue on 21 December 2011, Ajax held a 1–0 lead when a fan ran onto the pitch and launched a karate kick from behind against AZ goalkeeper Esteban Alvarado, who responded by attacking the fan before police and security arrived. When Alvarado was sent off for retaliating against his attacker, AZ left the pitch, and the match was abandoned. The KNVB rescinded the red card and ordered the match replayed in its entirety.

After Ajax also apologised to their opponents, they were fined €10,000 for failing to provide adequate security to prevent the fan, who was serving a three-year stadium ban, from entering the arena. Ajax accepted the penalties, and announced that it had extended the fan's stadium ban by 30 years and banned him for life from the club and its season ticket list.[15]

Barcelona–Las Palmas, 2017–18 La LigaEdit

Surrounding violence in Catalonia due to the 2017 Catalan independence referendum, the match between Barcelona and Las Palmas in the 2017–18 La Liga was played behind closed doors. Barcelona first requested the LFP to postpone their match which was to be played on the same day as the referendum. This request was declined by the LFP, saying that, if Barcelona refused to play the match, their six points would be deducted. To protect the fans, as well as in protest to LFP's decision, Barcelona played the match behind closed doors, a first at their stadium, Camp Nou. The match ended 3–0 in favor of Barcelona.[16][17][18]

Philippines–Qatar, 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup Asian QualifiersEdit

As part of the sanctions handed to the Philippine men's basketball team in the aftermath of their involvement in their brawl against Australia during their home game on 2 July 2018, the Philippine national team was obliged to play their next home match in the second round of the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup Asian qualifiers behind closed doors with the succeeding two home games being placed under probation.[19] The lone game that was played behind closed doors was their home game against Qatar on 17 September 2018 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Major League BaseballEdit

On 28 April 2015, a Major League Baseball game between the Chicago White Sox and Baltimore Orioles was played behind closed doors due to security concerns. The death of African-American resident Freddie Gray while in police custody had led to ongoing riots and civil unrest in the city; the game was to have been the last game of a three-game series, but the first two had already been postponed due to the unrest. The game was also moved from the evening to the afternoon, as a 10 p.m. curfew would have required suspension of the game had it been played at its original time. The game was televised in the Baltimore and Chicago markets, and was also offered as the "free game of the day" on MLB's streaming service nationwide.[20] Unofficially, some fans were able to watch the game through obstructed gates in left-center field, along with guests at the nearby Hilton Baltimore, which overlooks Camden Yards.[21]

This was the first time a major professional sporting event in North America was held in an empty venue; in Minor League Baseball, a 2008 Iowa Cubs game was played without public admittance due to flooding in Des Moines, Iowa, while a 2002 Charleston RiverDogs game in Charleston, South Carolina held a purposeful gimmick "Nobody Night" where no one was admitted to the park until the attendance figure was made official after the fifth inning; although approximately 1,800 spectators were in attendance, they were restricted to areas around the stadium (concession stands, etc.) until the end of the fifth inning when the attendance count was made.[22]

PGA Tour golfEdit

While large galleries consisting of thousands of fans are standard for top-level professional golf events in the United States, on 30 June 2012, the third round of the 2012 AT&T National at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland was played without fans being admitted due to trees being downed and other storm damage caused by a derecho the night before. Additionally, the start of the third round was delayed to the early afternoon, instead of a morning start that is normal for a round of a golf tournament utilizing a stroke play format, in order to allow for the continuation of course clean-up efforts. This is the first of two recorded instances of any part of a PGA Tour event being played without a gallery present.[23]

In the 2016 Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines Golf Course in the La Jolla community of San Diego, California, after inclement weather disrupted play on Sunday and several trees were ripped apart on the golf course, fans were barred from the premises for the Monday conclusion of the final round of the tournament due to safety issues.[24] The 2018 edition of the same tournament also was finished behind closed doors on Monday. The sudden death playoff had reached five holes without a winner, and darkness made it impossible to complete the tournament. The event concluded Monday morning at 8:18 a.m. behind closed doors.

Ice hockeyEdit

The Charlotte Checkers of the American Hockey League have played in two such "behind closed doors" games, both caused by severe winter storms when the opposing team and game officials had already arrived in the city. On 22 January 2016, the Checkers played against the Chicago Wolves behind closed doors because of a severe winter storm,[25] and the same again on 17 January 2018, the Checkers played against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers behind closed doors as a result of inclement weather (ice and snow). Both games were played at Bojangles' Coliseum.[26]

In 1985, a measles outbreak on campus led Boston University to hold home ice hockey games without spectators for a week, in order to control the disease's spread. Basketball games were also affected, and other large public events on campus were also temporarily banned.[27]

COVID-19 pandemicEdit

Games without crowds have become the norm during the COVID-19 pandemic due to government-imposed restrictions on large gatherings to prevent spread of COVID-19. Many events that were not postponed or cancelled were held behind closed doors as broadcast-only events.


Association footballEdit


  • The 2020 Tokyo Marathon was held with only elite competitors allowed to attend.[40]
  • Similarly, the London Marathon (originally scheduled for 26 April, but was postponed to 4 October) was also held only to attend elite competitors.[41]

Australian rules footballEdit

  • The 2020 AFL season played its first round of matches without spectators before suspending the season.[42]


  • Japan's NPB held preseason games without fans until the season was postponed prior to opening day.[43] The league planned to return without fans by mid-June 2020.[44]
  • South Korea's KBO League began their 2020 season on 5 May without fans in attendance.
  • Taiwan's CPB League began play on 11 April without fans.[45] Starting 8 May, a maximum of 1,000 fans were permitted to attend games.[46][47]
  • Major League Baseball in the United States and Canada began its shortened 2020 season on 23 July and held without spectators.[48][49] However, fans were allowed to attend the NLCS and World Series in Arlington, Texas.


Combat sportsEdit

Mixed martial artsEdit
Professional wrestlingEdit

WWE moved all of its professional wrestling programs to a studio at its training facility in Orlando between March 11, 2020, and August 2020 with no audience, including its flagship event WrestleMania 36 (originally scheduled to be held at Tampa, Florida's Raymond James Stadium on April 5).[62][63][64][65] In August, the promotion debuted an arena setup called the WWE ThunderDome to allow fans to virtually attend events;[66] a similar setup for their NXT brand dubbed the Capitol Wrestling Center debuted in October, though with a small crowd of select live fans allowed.[67] Rival promotion All Elite Wrestling similarly moved its weekly programs to a closed set, beginning March 18 at Daily's Place in Jacksonville, Florida (and a brief stint in April at a training warehouse in Georgia before returning to Daily's Place); the promotion began to a readmit a limited number of ticketed fans (10–15% capacity of venue) in late August 2020.[68] Other promotions similarly began holding shows behind closed doors.


The Haru basho in Osaka, Japan.[43] When the tournament went underway several wrestlers, used to fighting in a usually packed arenas, remark on how odd it is to fight in a virtually empty arena, with Enhō commenting, "It’s like I can’t raise my fighting spirit...It made me wonder what I'm fighting for."[69]


Gaelic gamesEdit

Unlike other sports such as association football, the concept of "behind closed doors" as a form of punishment does not exist in Gaelic games such as football and hurling. It first emerged in the sports due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) first thought about playing games behind closed doors in March 2020 but decided against it at that time.[75] The following month it had still not been given serious thought by the organisation.[76] Opponents at this time included players such as Killian Young and managers such as Pete McGrath.[77][78] On the night of 18 August 2020, the Government imposed new restrictions as the pandemic worsened, and games (which had just resumed) were forced behind closed doors as a result.[79][80]

The later rounds of the 2020 National Football League and 2020 National Hurling League and the entirety of the 2020 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship and 2020 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship were played at grounds where spectators were not admitted. The 2020 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final was the first All-Ireland final to be played behind closed doors, followed less than two weeks later by the 2020 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final. Early rounds of the 2021 National Football League and 2021 National Hurling League were also played without crowds.


The 2020 Players Championship was scheduled to play on its second day as it was due to plan without spectators, organizers had to cancel the remainder of the event. This subsequently had the PGA Tour to suspend the event until 11 June.[81] With the Masters Tournament (the first men's major championship of 2020) being rescheduled from April to November, while the PGA Championship and U.S. Open also being rescheduled to August and September, respectively from their usual May and June schedule, and the Open Championship cancelled for the first time since 1945.[82] The PGA Championship became the first men's major of the season and was held behind closed doors.[83]

Likewise, the early LPGA season was merely affected by the pandemic as tournaments in Asia had cancelled early in response with the outbreak in China,[84] as the LPGA Tour had to suspend until 30 July.[85] With the ANA Inspiration tournament (the first women's major championship of 2020) being rescheduled from April to September, while the KPMG Women's PGA Championship and U.S. Women's Open also being rescheduled to October and December, respectively, with the Evian Championship (first rescheduled to 6–9 August after being postponed from the original July schedule) cancelled for the first time in its 26-year history.[86] However, the AIG Women's British Open became the first women's major of the season and was held behind closed doors, took place on the usual August schedule and went on as planned.[87]

Gridiron footballEdit

NFL game between the New York Giants and Washington Football Team at MetLife Stadium without fans in October 2020

A match between the Seattle Dragons and LA Wildcats of the XFL was scheduled to be played behind closed doors; the league's decision came shortly after Washington state governor Jay Inslee announced a ban on public assemblies of over 250 people.[88][89] The game was ultimately never played as the pandemic forced the league to prematurely terminate its 2020 season.[90]

During the 2020 NFL season, many games were played behind closed doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some teams allowed a limited number of fans for some or all of their home games.[91]

Horse racingEdit

The British Horseracing Authority announced on 16 March that all horse racing in the UK would be held behind closed doors until the end of March.[92] Similarly, the annual Triple Crown races in the United States, including the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes were all held behind closed doors. The Kentucky Derby and Preakness States were both moved from their usual May scheduling to September and October, respectively, with the Belmont Stakes being held on its usual June date.[93]

Ice hockeyEdit

The Columbus Blue Jackets of the National Hockey League announced on 11 March 2020 that all of their remaining home games in the 2019–20 season at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio would be played behind closed doors due to an executive order by Ohio governor Mike DeWine that banned public gatherings with an attendance of 1,000 people or more.[94] This would subsequently become moot the following day when the NHL suspended its season. Starting August 1, the 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs commenced in the two bubble locations of Edmonton and Toronto with no fans present.

During the 2020–21 NHL season, three U.S.-based teams began the season admitting a limited number of spectators, but by the end of the regular season only the seven Canadian teams were playing crowdless games.[95][96][97][98]


Multi-sport eventsEdit

Signs placed by the Tokyo Tomin First no Kai political party calling for the 2020 Summer Olympics to be held behind closed doors.

Initially, the 2020 Summer Olympics (postponed to 2021 due to the pandemic) were approved for a maximum of 10,000 spectators or 50% capacity (whichever is lower) per-venue.[104] On 8 July 2021, it was announced that Tokyo would be placed under a new state of emergency from 12 July through 22 August due to rising cases in the area, and that spectators would be prohibited at all Olympic venues in the city. Organizers had already prohibited spectators and supporters from outside of Japan from attending the Games due to concerns over international travel restrictions.[105][106][107] Fukushima and Hokkaido will also prohibit spectators during the Games.[108]


The 2020 BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California was postponed shortly before the beginning of the qualifying stage after a COVID-19 case was confirmed within Riverside County and the county's health department declared a public health emergency.[109] Subsequently, both the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) and Women's Tennis Association (WTA) announced that their seasons would be suspended until at least 31 July, with the 2020 French Open being rescheduled to September and Wimbledon being cancelled for the first time since 1945. Furthermore, the US Open was played without spectators on the original late-August date as planned.[110][111] Additionally, the 2020 ATP Finals held in London (being the final year to be hosted the finals on that city) was played without spectators as planned.[112]

Non-sporting eventsEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Behind Closed Doors". Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  2. ^ "FIFA Disciplinary Code 2011 edition" (PDF). Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  3. ^ "Reds Behind Closed Doors 20/21". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 26 May 2021.
  4. ^ Baseball ready to step up to the plate, deliver shortened season. NBC Sports, June 23, 2020
  5. ^ "RGC – Regulamento Geral Das Competições" (PDF) (in Portuguese). CBF. Retrieved 23 July 2014.
  6. ^ "Resolução de Diretoria Nº 32/2014" (PDF) (in Portuguese). Federação Catarinense de Futebol. 16 July 2014. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
  7. ^ "BOMBA! Jogo da Série D terá portões fechados devido a nova gripe" (in Portuguese). Futebol Interior. 13 August 2009. Retrieved 15 August 2009.
  8. ^ "On the quiet: matches behind closed doors". 7 December 2004. Retrieved 3 October 2011.
  9. ^ "Ipswich assignment no Roman holiday" by Peter Ball, The Times page 22, 15 September 1982
  10. ^ "Juve punished over racial abuse". BBC Sport. 20 April 2009. Retrieved 4 October 2011.
  11. ^ "Swine flu leaves Mexican soccer stadiums empty". San Diego Union-Tribune. 27 April 2009. Retrieved 13 April 2020.
  12. ^ "Edinburgh to meet Castres on Monday behind closed doors". BBC Sport. 19 December 2010. Retrieved 19 December 2010.
  13. ^ Fraser, Suzan (21 September 2011). "Turkey wants more women and children at stadiums". Yahoo! Sports. Associated Press. Archived from the original on 24 September 2011. Retrieved 25 September 2011.
  14. ^ Associated Press (30 September 2011). "Free Turkish tickets for women, children". Retrieved 3 October 2011.
  15. ^ Associated Press (28 December 2011). "Ajax vs. Alkmaar to start from scratch". Retrieved 29 December 2011.
  16. ^ "Club president reveals why Barcelona played behind closed doors over postponing the game". The Independent. 2 October 2017. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
  17. ^ Sport, Telegraph (1 October 2017). "Barcelona beat Las Palmas behind closed doors amid Catalan referendum clashes". The Telegraph. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
  18. ^ Mackay, Hamish (1 October 2017). "Why Barcelona vs Las Palmas was played behind closed doors". Mirror. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
  19. ^ FIBA World Cup: Philippine hoops exec saddened to lose 6th man in closed door game ABS-CBN News Accessed 21 July 2018
  20. ^ Staff report (28 April 2015). "White Sox-Orioles game will be played Wednesday, closed to public". Retrieved 29 April 2015.
  21. ^ Encina, Eduardo A. & Kaltenbach, Chris (29 April 2015). "Even with Camden Yards closed to public, fans found way to support O's". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  22. ^ Castrovince, Anthony (28 April 2015). "MLB game without crowd also without precedent". Retrieved 29 April 2015.
  23. ^ Associated Press (30 June 2012). "Play under way, but fans out". Retrieved 9 August 2015.
  24. ^ "Course closed to public tomorrow due to safety issues". Farmers Insurance Open Twitter page. Retrieved 12 October 2016.
  25. ^ "Charlotte AHL game closed to the public as winter storm arrives".
  26. ^ "Weather forces AHL's Charlotte Checkers to play game in empty arena (Video)". 18 January 2018.
  27. ^ Associated Press (28 February 1985). "All No-Shows at B.U. Game". The New York Times. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  28. ^ "Coronavirus: Inter Milan v Ludogrets in Europa League to be played behind closed doors". BBC Sport. 24 February 2020. Retrieved 26 February 2020.
  29. ^ Tupas, Cedelf (10 March 2020). "Ceres-Negros to play AFC Cup match vs Bali United in empty stadium". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 10 March 2020.
  30. ^ "Aubameyang double wins FA Cup for Arsenal" – via
  31. ^ "MLS announces players may begin to use outdoor training fields for individual workouts May 6". 1 May 2020. Retrieved 1 May 2020.
  32. ^ "Coronavirus: Olympiakos v Wolves in Europa League behind closed doors". 9 March 2020 – via
  33. ^ "Coronavirus: Man Utd match at LASK behind closed doors". 10 March 2020 – via
  34. ^ "Coronavirus: Valencia vs. Atalanta Champions League clash behind closed doors". ESPN. 3 March 2020.
  35. ^ "Paris St-Germain 2–0 Borussia Dortmund: Neymar scores as French champions reach last eight". BBC Sport. 11 March 2020.
  36. ^ "Closed doors? PSG fans create fiery atmosphere to greet team at Parc des Princes". 11 March 2020.
  37. ^ KYODO NEWS. "Football: German Bundesliga to resume 16 May after virus halted play". Kyodo News+. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  38. ^ "Coronavirus: Germany's Bundesliga to resume this month, says Angela Merkel". 7 May 2020. Retrieved 3 August 2020 – via
  39. ^ Nagatsuka, Kaz (11 May 2020). "NPB, J. League remain in holding pattern after latest task force meeting". The Japan Times. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  40. ^ "Tokyo Marathon cancels mass participation race". Canadian Running Magazine. 17 February 2020.
  41. ^ "London Marathon: 2020 edition to be elite-only race, with mass event cancelled". BBC Sport. Retrieved 6 August 2020.
  42. ^ "AFL statement on postponement of 2020 season". AFL. 22 March 2020.
  43. ^ a b "Sumo: Spring meet unlikely to be held in "regular" fashion: JSA". Kyodo News. 28 February 2020. Retrieved 28 February 2020.
  44. ^ KYODO NEWS. "Baseball: NPB aiming for June start, All-Star game canceled". Kyodo News+. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  45. ^ Armstrong, Megan (8 April 2020). "CPBL's Rakuten Monkeys to Use Robot Mannequins as Fans Amid COVID-19". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 11 April 2020.
  46. ^ Pan, Jason (9 May 2020). "Virus Outbreak: Taiwan opens stadiums to ball fans". Taipei Times. Retrieved 9 May 2020.
  47. ^ Hsieh, Ching-wen; Mazzetta, Matthew (8 May 2020). "Taiwan the first to open pro baseball games to fans in 2020". Central News Agency. Retrieved 8 May 2020.
  48. ^ "60-game MLB season to start on 23 or 24 July, behind closed doors". WBSC. 24 June 2020. Retrieved 29 July 2020.
  49. ^ Effron, Oliver (23 July 2020). "Fox Sports will put 'virtual fans' in baseball stadiums this season". CNN Business.
  50. ^ NEWS, 10/11. "Big Ten Conference announces winter and spring sports to be played with no fans". maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  51. ^ Myerberg, Paul (11 March 2020). "Ohio ban means no fans at NCAA tournament games in Dayton and Cleveland". USA Today. Retrieved 11 March 2020.
  52. ^ Tom Schad (11 March 2020). "NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments will not include fans due to coronavirus concerns". USA Today. Retrieved 11 March 2020.
  53. ^ "NCAA cancels remaining winter and spring championships". 12 March 2020. Retrieved 28 March 2020.
  54. ^ "Warriors statement on Chase Center events". 11 March 2020. Retrieved 11 March 2020.
  55. ^ "NBA to suspend season following tonight's games" (Press release). National Basketball Association. 11 March 2020. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  56. ^ Reynolds, Tim (4 June 2020). "NBA Board of Governors approves 22-team restart of 2019–20 season". Associated Press. Retrieved 24 July 2020.
  57. ^ PBA to hold 'bubble season' at Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga, Reuben Terrado,, September 17, 2020
  58. ^ "". External link in |title= (help)
  59. ^ IATF provisional clearance paves way for PBA scrimmages, games in Clark bubble, Gerry Ramos,, September 24, 2020
  60. ^ "Epidemic: How Will the Coronavirus Impact MMA's Biggest Emerging Markets?". Sherdog.
  61. ^ "Coronavirus pushes UFC on ESPN+ 28 behind closed doors in Brasilia: Reports". MMA Junkie.
  62. ^ Ramos, Dino-Ray (16 March 2020). "WrestleMania To Stream As Two-Night Event With Host Rob Gronkowski In Wake Of Coronavirus Outbreak – Update". Deadline. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  63. ^ "WWE Raw results, recap, grades: Steve Austin celebrates, new WrestleMania 36 matches made". Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  64. ^ Otterson, Joe (12 March 2020). "WWE Moves 'SmackDown Live' to Orlando Performance Center With No Live Audience Due to Coronavirus". Variety. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  65. ^ "WWE SmackDown results, recap, grades: John Cena caps surreal empty arena show you have to see". Retrieved 14 March 2020.
  66. ^ "WWE introducing new state-of-the-art viewing experience with WWE ThunderDome". WWE. 17 August 2020. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  67. ^ Staff (4 October 2020). "Capitol Wrestling Center to be unveiled tonight at NXT TakeOver 31". WWE. Retrieved 4 October 2020.
  68. ^ Mealey, Jason (13 March 2020). "AEW moves show from Rochester to Jacksonville due to coronavirus". WJXT. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  69. ^ "SUMO/ Wrestlers fight to lift competitive spirit at tourney without fans". Asahi Shimbun. 9 March 2020. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  70. ^ "Update: HBL PSL 2020 schedule tweaked". Pakistan Cricket Board. Retrieved 13 March 2020.
  71. ^ "Coronavirus scare: PCB reschedules PSL 2020, final to be played on March 18". The News International. Retrieved 13 March 2020.
  72. ^ "PSL matches in Karachi to be held without the crowd". Aaj News. Retrieved 13 March 2020.
  73. ^ "PCB cuts short PSL after some foreign players opt to leave Pakistan over coronavirus". DAWN. Retrieved 13 March 2020.
  74. ^ "VIVO IPL 2021 will be played behind closed doors at home". CricsGuru. Retrieved 10 March 2021.
  75. ^ "Tom Ryan: GAA 'very quickly' decided against playing behind closed doors". Irish Examiner. 13 March 2020.
  76. ^ "Games behind closed doors 'not seriously considered by the GAA at this stage'". 20 April 2020.
  77. ^ "Young against Gaelic games going on behind closed doors". The Kerryman. 25 April 2020.
  78. ^ "Why behind closed doors plan can't work for GAA: Pete McGrath". Belfast Telegraph. 28 April 2020.
  79. ^ "GAA players react to new 'behind closed door' restrictions". 19 August 2020.
  80. ^ "GAA sets limit of 40 people per team for 'behind closed doors' games". 19 August 2020.
  81. ^ Wacker, Brian (12 March 2020). "Players 2020: PGA Tour cancels Players Championship, next three tournament". Golf World. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  82. ^ "Golf organizations new schedule". PGA Tour. 6 April 2020. Retrieved 6 April 2020.
  83. ^ Harig, Bob (22 June 2020). "PGA Championship, minus fans, gets green light at Harding Park". ESPN. Retrieved 27 July 2020.
  84. ^ "LPGA Tour cancels 2 more Asia tournaments due to coronavirus". ESPN. Associated Press. 9 February 2020.
  85. ^ "LPGA Targets Date to Restart 2020 Season". LPGA. 29 April 2020.
  86. ^ "Coronavirus & golf: LPGA Evian Championship in France cancelled". BBC Sport. 9 June 2020. Retrieved 9 June 2020.
  87. ^ McLaughlin, Chris (7 July 2020). "Women's British Open & Scottish Open to go ahead in August without fans". BBC Sport. Retrieved 8 July 2020.
  88. ^ Gantt, Darin (11 March 2020). "XFL announces Seattle Dragons will host game without fans". Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  89. ^ "STATEMENT REGARDING LA-SEATTLE GAME FOR WEEK 6". XFL. 11 March 2020. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  90. ^ Kerr, Jeff; Kercheval, Ben (12 March 2020). "XFL 2020: Coronavirus forces start-up league to suspend play, but players can sign with NFL teams before FA". Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  91. ^ "Where each of the 32 NFL teams stands on allowing fans into stadiums". ESPN. 2 September 2020. Archived from the original on 20 August 2020. Retrieved 4 September 2020.
  92. ^ "Coronavirus: Horse racing behind closed doors in Britain until end of March". 16 March 2020 – via
  93. ^ "Kentucky Derby being postponed due to coronavirus, reports say". CBS News. 16 March 2020.
  94. ^ "Blue Jackets statement regarding upcoming game schedule". 11 March 2020. Retrieved 11 March 2020.
  95. ^ "Canadiens approved to host 2,500 fans for games starting May 28". Retrieved 18 May 2021.
  96. ^ Raymond, Ted; Woods, Michael (12 January 2021). "Ottawa Senators owner clarifies comments on fan attendance: 'That time is not now'". CTV News. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
  97. ^ Rosove, Jay (1 March 2021). "Edmonton Oilers submit proposal to bring live fans back to the arena". CTV News Edmonton. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  98. ^ Epp, Chris (4 March 2021). "Capacity crowd? How soon could Flames fans return to the 'Dome?". CTV News Calgary. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  99. ^ "Bahrain Grand Prix goes behind closed doors in response to coronavirus". The Guardian. 8 March 2020. Retrieved 9 March 2020.
  100. ^ "NASCAR statement on Atlanta and Homestead". NASCAR. 12 March 2020. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  101. ^ "Here's what to expect at NASCAR's The Real Heroes 400 at Darlington Raceway". Fox News. Associated Press. 17 May 2020. Retrieved 17 May 2020.
  102. ^ McFadin, Daniel (9 July 2020). "Here is what upcoming NASCAR Cup races fans can attend". NBCSports. Retrieved 14 August 2020.
  103. ^ "How NASCAR's All-Star Race at Bristol became the first big test of U.S. fans returning to sports venues". SportingNews. 16 July 2020. Retrieved 16 July 2020.
  104. ^ Gallagher, Chris; Leussink, Daniel; Slodkowski, Antoni (21 June 2021). "Up to 10,000 spectators allowed at each Olympic venue despite warnings". Reuters. Retrieved 21 June 2021.
  105. ^ Houston, Michael (8 July 2021). "Tokyo to be under state of emergency for duration of Olympics". Inside the Games. Retrieved 8 July 2021.
  106. ^ "Tokyo Olympic Games: Spectators barred as state of emergency announced". BBC News. 8 July 2021. Retrieved 8 July 2021.
  107. ^ "Fans barred from all Olympic events in Tokyo as COVID-19 fears grow". Inside the Games. 8 July 2021. Retrieved 8 July 2021.
  108. ^ "Japan's Fukushima, in reversal, bars spectators from Olympic events". Reuters. 10 July 2021. Retrieved 11 July 2021.
  109. ^ "Indian Wells' BNP Paribas Open cancelled due to local coronavirus case". 8 March 2020. Retrieved 9 March 2020.
  110. ^ "International tennis season suspended further until 31 July". TASS. 16 May 2020. Retrieved 16 May 2020.
  111. ^ "US Open to be held behind closed doors after New York governor gives go-ahead". BBC Sport. 16 June 2020. Retrieved 16 June 2020.
  112. ^ "The ATP Finals at The O2 in London to be played behind closed doors". Sky Sports. 14 August 2020. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  113. ^ Ritzau (6 March 2020). "Myndigheder vil aflyse arrangementer med over 1000 mennesker". Berlingske (in Danish). Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  114. ^ Madsen, Maria Christine (6 March 2020). "Coronavirus påvirker Melodi Grand Prix: Spiller i en tom sal". BT (in Danish). Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  115. ^ "Corona: Kommende kampe spilles uden tilskuere". FC Copenhagen (in Danish). 6 March 2020. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  116. ^ Ianni, Matteo (28 February 2020). "Coronavirus: le Salon de l'auto de Genève 2020 est annulé" [Coronavirus: Geneva Motor Show 2020 is canceled] (in French). France: Agefi. Retrieved 9 March 2020.
  117. ^ Williams, Stephen (4 March 2020). "No Auto Show in Geneva, but the Car of the Year Must Go On" – via
  118. ^ Alpad, Christina (18 May 2020). "Covid 'safe' Miss Universe Philippines 2020 coronation reset to Oct 25". The Manila Times. Retrieved 17 July 2021.

External linksEdit