Marseille v Saint-Etienne: Four Covid-19 cases postpone Ligue 1 opener

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Marseille warmed up for the new campaign with a friendly against Nimes last week

The 2020-21 French high-flying season opener has been postponed after four positive coronavirus tests in Marseille.

Marseille was to host Saint-Etienne on Friday in the first of eight matches of the weekend in Ligue 1.

The 2019-2020 campaign was cut short in April due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with Paris St-Germain, 12 points ahead at the top, having won the title.

Marseille v Saint-Etienne will now be played on September 16 or 17.

The French league told clubs last week that its coronavirus treatment protocol meant more than three positive cases at one club were likely to lead to a postponement.

Former Marseille Aston Villa defender Jordan Amavi tested positive last week with three other players following in the final round.

They called off a friendly against German club Stuttgart following Amavi’s positive test.

Marseille, which are led by former Chelsea and Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas, finished second for PSG in last season’s shortened campaign.

France was added to a list of countries from which those arriving in the UK are required to quarantine themselves for two weeks on Friday.

French Prime Minister Jean Castex acknowledged that the infection figures were going “in the wrong direction” in the country.

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