Southampton’s FA Cup Semi-Final against Leicester City has been set for Sunday 18th April, with kick-off scheduled for 6:30pm.
As part of the easing of restrictions on crowds in the UK, there could be up to 4,000 supporters present at the game too. A report from BBC Sport explains that one of the FA Cup Semi-Finals will have 4,000 fans present , whilst the Telegraph suggests that these fans could have to be from London to limit travel in the current pandemic.
The last time Saints played in front of partly full stands was their 1-0 home loss against Manchester City back in December and they will be hoping for a better result if they are chosen as the tester event at the national stadium.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side have seen their form slip in the Premier League but strong cup run has kept hopes of success alive until midway through next month.
Fans will have more impact off the field for Southampton
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Playing in front of neutral fans will surely not have an impact on Saints’ performance on the pitch but having supporters returning could signal the beginning of the end of restrictions.
Clubs like Saints have lost so much matchday income from ticket sales and empty stadiums during this pandemic and a steady flow of money will help to ease the financial burden slowly at the very least.
More importantly, the connection between the players and the supporters will appear once again having been severed in the last year.
Saints, starting to build the foundations for something good under their current manager, will be keen to get back playing at a full St Mary’s next season to get that added push towards a better season all round.
Having seen their side put in some strong displays with a real identity since last March, fans will also be itching to get back to their seats and watch the action up close once again.