Serie A to be banned until end of April

Italian Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora is set to extend a ban on sport until the end of April.
Italian Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora is set to extend a ban on sport until the end of April.

Italian Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora reportedly plans to propose an nationwide sports ban extension until the end of April.

Soccer's Serie A and other sporting events are suspended until April 3 but Spadafore says that timeframe is now "unrealistic" and his proposal, to be made on Monday, will also include training now that the Tokyo Olympics have been postponed.

"I will propose extending the ban on sports competitions at every level for all of April," he told the La Repubblica newspaper on Sunday.

The Serie A has been suspended since March 9 and at least 15 top-flight players have tested positive for Covid-19.

The Italian death toll from the disease topped 10,000 on Sunday, with some 92,000 overall cases.

Spadafora also said he would make available 400 million euros ($A725 million) for amateur sports hit hard by the pandemic, insisting that "sport isn't just football, and football not only Serie A."

The minister added that the Seria A must must be ready for big changes in light of the outbreak, with many clubs facing major economic hardship due to the suspension and uncertainty when and if the season can resume.

"The big clubs live in a bubble, beyond their means, looking at the millionaire wages of the players. They need to understand that nothing can be like before anymore after this crisis," he said.

On Saturday, players for champions Juventus agreed to forgo four months in salaries, amounting to some 90 million euros.

Australian Associated Press