Owner of Italian club Novara diagnosed with coronavirus

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Owner of Italian club Novara diagnosed with coronavirus

Italian Serie C club Novara have announced that their owner is currently in hospital after testing positive for coronavirus.

Novara released a statement on Sunday confirming thair owner Maurizio Rullo had been diagnosed after returning from a work trip to Germany.

Rullo informed the Lega Serie C, but as he did not have contact with the squad following his return, it was not considered necessary to quarantine the whole team.

Novara are the second club in Serie C to be affected by the disease, as Pianese had two players and a member of staff test positive.

The highly-contagious respiratory illness has taken hold in Italy, with considerably more cases than any other European country.

The deadly virus, which has affected over 100,000 people worldwide, has claimed over 200 lives in Italy.

With the outbreak worsening, all sporting events in Italy have been ordered to play behind closed doors until at least April 3.

Earlier on Saturday, President of the Italian Football Federation Gabriele Gravina told Rai Sport that the situation could worsen still, with the proposition of a full suspension not out of the question.

If a Serie A player were to test positive for the Coronavirus, we would not rule out suspending the whole season.

We'd have to be realistic, and in those circumstances, adopt all the necessary procedures to guarantee first and foremost the health of our athletes, then consider what impact it can have on sporting competition.

We can't rule anything out right now, but we also should not try to dream up a hypothesis for a situation that at this moment we cannot predict.

Serie A fixtures will resume in empty stadiums this weekend after several games were suspended over the last two rounds.

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