La Liga restart will be weird without fans, says Atletico star Carrasco

Atletico Madrid winger Yannick Carrasco said it will be "strange" playing behind closed doors when La Liga restarts following the Covid-19 crisis.

Suspended in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, La Liga will get back underway with a derby clash between Sevilla and Real Betis on June 11.

Diego Simeone's Atletico - sixth in the standings and a point adrift of the Champions League places - will travel to Athletic Bilbao on June 14.

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"It is a bit strange behind closed doors, but we are professions and we will do things in the best way so that the fans can watch a beautiful game on TV," Carrasco, who is back on loan at Atletico from Chinese side Dalian Professional, said.

Atletico have not played since sensationally eliminating Champions League holders Liverpool in the last 16 of the competition in March.

Simeone's men had also drawn back-to-back La Liga matches prior to the 2019-20 season being postponed.

Belgium international Carrasco added: "I'm very happy to see everyone and be able to train with everyone.

"The team is fine. We have worked hard to prepare for the first match.

"This stage is set to enter that match in a good state."

Speculation is surrounding the future of Atletiico midfielder Saul Niguez, who declared he would be announcing a new club on Wednesday.

The Spain star has long been linked with Manchester United, while Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal have also been associated with the 25-year-old in the past.

His announcement has trigged speculation once again that he could be heading to the Premier League.

Taking to Twitter, he posted a statement that simply said: “I wanted to communicate something important to you.” Below it was a graphic that read: “New club. I’ll announce it in three days.”

The ambiguous nature of the word “club” has left Atletico supporters hopeful that he is not talking about a football club, with the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic having previously pulled such publicity stunts in the past.

Atletico fans have been long suffering in this type of situation, having seen fans’ favourite Antoine Griezmann put them through the wringer in 2018 when he built up a video called ‘La Decision’ that was expected to see him announce a move to Barcelona, only to perform a U-turn and state that he was staying loyal to Atleti – at least for a further 12 months.

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