Turin, February 22: The Serie B match between Ascoli and Cremonese has been postponed as a preventative measure against the spread of the coronavirus after two people died in the Lombardy and Veneto regions.
The coronavirus - officially named Covid-19 – first emerged in China towards the end of last year but has spread to a number of other countries since, including Italy.
It was confirmed on Saturday that two Italian people who had been infected have died - a 78-year-old man from Padua, Veneto, as well as a woman in Lombardy.
According to Italian news agency ANSA, 88 amateur football matches scheduled to take place in Lombardy on Saturday had been postponed, while Serie C and Serie D games were also impacted.
Ascoli's home match with Cremonese – who are from Cremona, Lombardy – in the eastern Marche region is the most high-profile match to be called off, following a decision from the Operational Safety Group (GOS).
This comes after the Cremonese youth team's match with Brescia in Primavera 2 did not go ahead due to the "health emergency" in Cremona.
A Lega Serie B statement, confirming the postponement of the youth fixture, read: "Due to the health emergency following contagions for coronavirus which is involving Cremonese, which has also led to the closure of all schools in the city by order of the mayor, and in agreement with the two clubs, Lega B postpones the Primavera 2 match between Cremonese and Brescia scheduled for the Arvedi sports center today, Saturday 22 February, at 2.30 pm."