Coronavirus: Messi says football will never be the same

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Lionel Messi believes football will never be the same following the coronavirus pandemic.

While the seasons were brought to an end in France and the Netherlands, football in Europe's major leagues is gradually returning behind closed doors.

The Bundesliga resumed on May 16 and Messi and Barca will soon be able to recommence their quest to claim the title in LaLiga, which is poised to return on June 11.

In England, the Premier League will restart on June 17, with Italy's Serie A set to get going again on June 20.

However, the financial implications of the suspension and playing games without spectators in the stadiums will have a significant impact on clubs and competitions around the globe.

Speaking to El Pais, Messi said: "I don't think football will ever be the same. But beyond football, I don't think life, in general, will ever be the same, either.

"All of us that have experienced this situation will remember what happened in one way or another.

"In my case, it's with a feeling of sorrow and frustration for those that have suffered the most due to the loss of loved ones.

"I am sure that football and sport, in general, will be affected. Financially, because there are companies linked with the world of sport that will maybe experience some difficulties because of the coronavirus.

"But also professionally, because with the return to training and competing, what was normal before now is going to be different. It will be a strange situation for us as athletes but also for anyone that has to change their usual work dynamic.

"I am grateful to all of the people that are fighting to beat this virus in hospitals, health centres and care homes. Nearly all of us have doubts about how the world will be after everything that's happened.

"Beyond the lockdown measures and the whole situation, which caught us by surprise, many people have had a really tough time because they've been directly affected.

"People have lost family and friends and were not even able to say goodbye. There have been a lot of negatives to come from this crisis, but I don't think there's anything worse than losing your loved ones. That, for me, is hugely frustrating and unfair."