Journal of Human Sport and Exercise

Fan’s perspective on professional leagues and sporting events during COVID-19 confinement period

José Miguel Vegara-Ferri, María Carboneros, Karolina Deliautaite, Arturo Díaz-Suárez, José María López-Gullón


The restriction imposed by COVID-19 pandemic has caused a great social change in the world and has affected many sectors, including the sport industry by having an impact and altering the normal development of the sport competitions and events. Therefore, it is fundamental to know sport fans’ opinions about the professional championships during the confinement period. The sample is composed by 1025 professional sports leagues fans and major sporting events celebrated in Spain, with people in the age range 18-70. The instrument used to collect data was an adaptation of the American questionnaire designed by Seton Hall University. The results show that 55% of fans thought that sport leagues and events were cancelled on time. Furthermore, 92.8% of the survey respondents would not attend a live match without social distancing measures or without the existence of a vaccine; 67.4% would follow it through mass media resources with the same interest. The population group under 25 feels safe attending sports leagues or events (9.7%). These results might help to take decisions based on preventive measures to guarantee security within the sport context. Keywords: football; spectator; assistants; social distancing; restrictions.


Football; Spectator; Assistants; Social distancing; Restrictions


Aguilar-Gamboa, F.R. (2020). Desafíos para el manejo de pacientes con COVID-19 en Latinoamérica. Revista Experiencia en Medicina del Hospital Regional Lambayeque, 6(1), 63-70.

Anderson, R., Heesterbeek, H., Klinkenberg, D., & Hollingsworth, T. D. (2020). How will country-based mitigation measures influence the course of the COVID-19 epidemic?. The Lancet, 395(10228), 931-934.

BBC. (2020). Coronavirus: 8 gráficos que muestran cómo cambió el mundo con la cuarentena por el covid-19. BBC News Mundo. Retrieved from:

Brett, G., Toresdahl, M.D., Irfan, M., & Asif, M.D. (2020). Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Considerations for the Competitive Athlete. Sage Journals, 12(3), 221-224.

Concejo, E. (2020). El deporte español cierra las puertas por el coronavirus: todos los partidos se jugarán sin público. La vanguardia. Retrieved from:

Corrales, A. (2010). El deporte como elemento educativo indispensable en el área de educación física. EmásF, Revista Digital de Educación Física, 1(4), 23-36.

Cuestas, E. (2020). La pandemia por el nuevo coronavirus COVID-19. Revista de la Facultad de Ciencias Médicas de Córdoba, 77(1), 1-3.

De Assis, J., De Freitas, M., Montibeler, E., & da Silva, T. (2018). La importancia de los mega eventos deportivos para la generación de empleo El caso de Rio de Janeiro (Brasil). Estudios y perspectivas en turismo, 27(3), 679-698. Retrieved from:

Dwyer, L., Forsyth, P., & Spurr, R. (2005). Estimating the Impacts of Special Events on an Economy. Journal of Travel Research, 43(4), 351 - 359.

France 24. (2020). El mundo del deporte paralizado por el Covid-19. France 24. Retrieved from:

Gálvez, P., Fernández, J., García, J., & García, J. (2016). Special Issue: Research in economics and sport management. Intangible Capital, 12(3), 755-758.

Health Alert and Emergency Coordination Centre (2020) Actualización nº 88. Enfermedad por el coronavirus (COVID-19). Dirección General de Salud Pública, Calidad e Innovación, Ministerio de Sanidad. Gobierno de España. Retrieved from:

Johns Hopkins University Medicine. (2020). COVID-19 Dashboard by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins. Retrieved from:

Kelvin, D., y Rubino, S. (2020). Fear of the novel coronavirus. The Journal of infection in developing countries, 14(1), 1-2.

Kolyperas, D., Maglaras, G. y Sparks, L. (2019). Sport fans’ roles in value co-creation. European Sport Management Quarterly , 19(2), 201-220.

KPMG Sports (2015). Impacto socio-económico del fútbol profesional en España. Retrieved from:

La Vanguardia (2020). La FIFA trabaja en un plan de rescate económico para los clubs. La Vanguardia. Retrieved from:

LaLiga (2018). Informe económico-financiero del fútbol profesional 2018. Retrieved from:

LaLiga (2020). LaLiga acuerda el aplazamiento de la competición. Retrieved from:

Lazzerini, M., & Putoto, G. (2020). COVID-19 in Italy: momentous decisions and many uncertainties. The Lancet Global Health, 8(5). 641-642.

Llorente, R. (2020). Impacto del COVID-19 en el mercado de trabajo: un análisis de los colectivos vulnerables. Documentos de Trabajo (IAES, Instituto Universitario de Análisis Económico y Social), 2, 1-29.

Marca (2020). Lista de futbolistas con coronavirus en cada una de las ligas. Retrieved from:

Memish, Z., Steffen, R., White, P., Dar, O., Azhar, E. I., Sharma, A., & Zumla, A. (2019). Mass gatherings medicine: Public health issues arising from mass gathering religious and sporting events. The Lancet, 393(10185), 2073–2084.

Miserachs, J. (2020). LaLiga Santander puede perder 3,2 millones de espectadores. Mundo deportivo. Retrieved from:

Oliveira, A. (2011) “A economia dos megaeventos: impactos setoriais e regionais”. Revista Paranaense de Desenvolvimento, 120, 257-275.

Olympic. (2020). Joint Statement from the international olympic committee and the Tokyo 2020 organising comittee. Retrieved from:

Parnell, D., Widdop, P., Bond, A., & Wilson, R. (2020). COVID-19, networks and sport. Managing Sport and Leisure.

Petersen, E., Wilson, M. E., Touch, S., McCloskey, B., Mwaba, P., Bates, M., Dar, O., Mattes, F., Kidd, M., Ippolito, G., Azhar, E.L., & Zumla, A. (2016). Rapid spread of Zika virus in the Americas-implications for public health preparedness for mass gatherings at the 2016 Brazil Olympic Games. International Journal of Infectious Diseases, 44, 11-15.

Real Madrid (2020). El Real Madrid C.F. reduce sus gastos para esta temporada. Jugadoresm técnicos y empleados acuerdan con el club una importante iniciativa de ahorro. Real Madrid. Retrieved from:

Rodríguez, P. (2012). La economía del deporte. Estudios de Economía Aplicada, 30(2), 387-417.

Seton Hall University (2020). Nearly 3 of 4 Americans Say They Won’t Attend Games Without Coronavirus Vaccine Developed. Seton Hall Sports Poll: Seton Hall University, EEUU.

Shigemura, J., Ursano, R., Morganstein, J., Kurosawa, M., & Benedek, D. (2020). Public responses to the novel 2019 coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in Japan: Mental health consequences and target populations. Psychiatry and clinical Neurosciences, 74(4), 281.

Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport (2016). Survey of Sporting Habits in Spain 2015. Synthesis of results. Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport of Spain, Madrid, Spain. Retrieved from:

Viñas, S. (2020). Francia cancela definitivamente la liga de fútbol. Journal El Mundo. Retrieved from:

World Health Organization (2016). Situation report: Zika virus, Microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome. Retrieved from:

World Health Organization (2020). WHO Director-General's opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19 - 11 March 2020. Retrieved from:

Yokokura, Y. (2020) Online press conference. Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan. April 28, 2020 Tokyo, Japan.


Copyright (c) 2018 Journal of Human Sport and Exercise

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.