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Ligue 1 suspended due to coronavirus outbreak as French football shuts down indefinitely

Authorities in France have followed the lead of European counterparts by announcing that all games in Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 will be suspended indefinitely amid the ongoing concerns over coronavirus.

The outbreak of Covid-19 has forced schedules around the world to be assessed.

Many have taken the decision to postpone sporting events down until further notice.

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That is an approach now being favoured by French football, with the Professional Football League (LFP) announcing a complete shutdown in operations across its top two tiers.

A statement from LFP read: “Following the announcements of the President of the Republic in order to respond to the health crisis linked to Covid-19, the LFP Board of Directors unanimously decided this Friday, March 13 to immediately suspend the Ligue 1 Conforama championships and Domino's Ligue 2 until further notice.

“As the President of the Republic pointed out yesterday, collective interest must be placed above everything. The urgency today is to curb the epidemic, protect the most vulnerable, and avoid displacement.

“At the end of the meeting scheduled by UEFA on March 17, the LFP Board of Directors will meet.”

Noel Le Graet, president of the French Football Federation (FFF), had announced on Thursday that all activities connected to his association would be put on hold.

He stated on social media in the wake of comments from French President Emmanuel Macron in which it was revealed that all educational facilities will be closing their doors: “The announcements by the President of the Republic has led the French Football Federation to assume its responsibilities in order to contribute unambiguously to stem the health crisis that is hitting our country. 

"Consequently, I wish to announce this evening the suspension of all the activities and competitions managed by the Federation, its leagues and its districts, throughout the territory. 

“Thus, all the female and male amateur championships, of all age categories, the various tournaments and rallies, the training and the activity of football schools are interrupted as of tomorrow Friday, March 13, and until further notice.

“They will resume as soon as the sanitary conditions allow it.”

French football joins its counterparts in Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and America in bringing a complete halt to football matters as the world as a whole seeks to manage the threat of the coronavirus pandemic.