Coronavirus fears force PSG's match against Strasbourg to be postponed

Paris Saint-Germain's Ligue 1 clash away at Strasbourg, which had been scheduled for Saturday, has been postponed due to the recent spread of COVID-19.

Both clubs had held their standard prematch news conferences and named their squads with the match still scheduled to take place before it was ultimately cancelled due to a local prefectural order.

In an official communique, the Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) explained that the game could not go ahead due to the spread of the coronavirus in the lower Rhine region of Eastern France.

The LFP statement was then relayed by both Strasbourg and PSG via social media.

PSG have expressed their regret at the decision, notably that they would have preferred to know about this possibility before travelling to Strasbourg during a busy period.

The Ligue 1 leaders also urged the LFP to organise itself to regularly update and share with the authorities the constraints of football teams on the move, while respecting the decision of the prefecture.

PSG are due to play Borussia Dortmund in next week's Champions League round of 16 second leg on Wednesday and will not be in action again before that clash with the Germans.

Despite heavy speculation over whether or not it will be played behind closed doors, nothing official has been communicated on the topic to date and supporters are still expected for the clash.

Ligue 1 had already taken precautionary measures to prevent the potential spread of the virus including players holding mascots by shoulders instead of their hands and no handshakes between players and match officials ahead of games.

The suspension of PSG's match against Strasbourg is the first in Ligue 1 since the global outbreak of the coronavirus.

In Italy, all sporting events including Serie A matches have been ordered to take place with no spectators until April 3 due to fears of spreading the coronavirus in the epicenter of the disease in Europe.