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Let's protect everyone around us during coronavirus outbreak – Atletico Madrid boss Simeone

3:55 AM EDT 3/14/20
DiegoSimeone-cropped
The Atletico Madrid boss has instructed fans to stay at home as much as possible during the recent outbreak

Atletico Madrid head coach Diego Simeone called for people to stay home in Spain to prevent the spread of coronavirus and protect "all of those around us".

La Liga and Segunda games have been postponed for at least the next two matchdays in efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19, which continues to disrupt sport across the globe.

Simeone used social media to spread awareness about coronavirus.

"I wanted to send you a message of awareness," Simeone said in a video message posted to Twitter.

"From my home, I invite you all to follow the path set by the experts, taking care of ourselves and all of those around us. Let's stay home."

There have been more than 5,000 cases of coronavirus in Spain, with over 100 deaths.

Globally, over 5,400 people have died from the virus following more than 145,000 cases.

Prior to La Liga being suspended, Atletico were enduring a frustrating season. Although they had lost only four matches, 12 draws ensured they were placed no higher than sixth, a point behind fourth-placed Real Sociedad, with Barcelona two points clear atop the table, 13 distant from the capital side.

Their fortunes in Europe, however, had been better.

On Wednesday, they dramatically qualified for the quarter-finals of the Champions League by twice coming from behind to defeat Liverpool 3-2 at Anfield after extra-time, with Marcos Llorente the hero as he netted twice.

When or even if that competition concludes, however, is unclear as UEFA has acted to postpone the second legs of next week's last-16 matches amid the global health scare.

Europa League fixtures have also been disrupted, with the last-16 first legs between Sevilla and Roma, and Inter and Getafe postponed. Meanwhile, the second legs of the other ties, which were due to take place next Thursday, have also been put on hold.

All of Europe's major leagues have been suspended because of the outbreak of the latest coronavirus, while football has not been the only sport touched.

Major events all around the world, including the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Australia and the Masters golf in the USA have been postponed or cancelled in a bid to slow the virus' spread.