By the time Serie A’s 2021/22 season kicks off, 538 days will have passed since fans last decorated the stands when Roma beat Cagliari 4-3 on March 1st, 2020. That’s soon to change, however. Serie A has been given permission from the Italian government to host 50% capacity in all stadiums. Fans allowed in must have a “Green Pass”, proving either vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. To open for fans stadiums must also be in a White Zone, the lowest tier of virus restrictions.
This is especially welcome news for Inter, which lost the most money from eighteen months of empty stadiums. In fact, the biggest impact for Inter will probably be in finances rather than any sort of home-field advantage. Even without spectators, the Nerazzurri had the best home record (17W-1T-1L, 53 points) of Serie A last season and won thirteen more points than Juventus in second. While it will be hard for Simone Inzaghi to repeat that impressive feat, Inter does stand to gain more money than anyone else from the reopening of stadiums. The Nerazzurri consistently have the highest attendance in Italy and 37,961 fans will be allowed back in, the most of any club (except Milan of course).
Seeing fans back is a very welcome sight as Italy and the football world recovers from the pandemic. The Undersecretary for Sport, Valentina Vezzali, has already said she hopes the limit will be increased to 75% capacity soon. Empty, silent stadiums are at last a thing of the past.