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Club Brugge to host Napoli in an empty stadium

Fans have been barred from the Jan Breydel Stadium over ongoing security concerns after the Paris attack.

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Napoli will soon be travelling to Belgium to take on Club Brugge in a Europa League match, but something is going to be a bit different about this one: there won't be anyone in the stands. Normally when a match is played in an empty stadium, either the club or their fans screwed up pretty bad and earned a stadium ban. That is, unfortunately, not the case this time: local and national police ordered the stadium be closed because of security risks.

Belgium has been subject to several national manhunts in the wake of the terrorist attacks on Paris, as a number of them were based in or near Brussels, just over an hour away from Brugge. There are still a number of suspects at large that authorities are searching for, so for the sake of public safety they've elected to not allow a large crowd to gather at the Jan Breydel stadium.

Club Brugge's president, Vincent Mannaert, is understandably upset about losing the advantage of a home crowd, and expressed his frustration in an interview on Tuesday. "This is a great disadvantage for us, who have our qualification at stake, unlike Napoli. We're disappointed, but at the same time we can't change the situation."

Mannaert says that Brugge tried to get the match rescheduled, but UEFA shot them down. There was no realistic chance of that happening, but one supposes that the club had to try.