Tottenham Hotspur’s summer preseason tour is now a huge question mark.
The International Champions Cup, which has been the primary preseason tournament for the last several summers, announced today that all matches in Asia are officially cancelled due to the outbreak of COVID-19. Dan Kilpatrick confirmed as such today.
#thfc International Champions Cup matches scheduled to take place in Asia this summer have been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak. Impacts Spurs, who were planning South Korea trip. https://t.co/YywA1Aohjo— Dan Kilpatrick (@Dan_KP) March 2, 2020
This is probably the correct move, given that COVID-19 is still the focus of the World Health Organization and has a “Very High” threat level. Several countries have taken measures to limit large group gatherings. Japan, for example, have shut down schools in an effort to limit spread of the virus. The Olympics, scheduled to take place this summer in Tokyo, are also very much in doubt due to the outbreak. France has put a ban on indoor gatherings over 5,000 people.
We had a quick piece last week about how Spurs were already considering their options and thought about changing their trip to Korea, regardless of what ICC decided. That decision was made for them today, so now what Tottenham do for their preseason is up in the air. The club have yet to comment on the situation and it’s entirely possible that the ICC as a whole is cancelled or the matches are moved to another continent, though that is simply conjecture at this point. Matches on other continents, North America included, are still scheduled to take place though that can change depending on the spread of COVID-19 as we approach the summer months.
For now, Tottenham Hotspur do not have any set preseason plans and probably have some options on the table. If the ICC is out the window, Spurs could opt to play some closed-door matches for preparation. Another option is to invite a few clubs to London for their own small tournament like Bayern Munich do for the Audi Cup. Only time will tell, and there are a lot of factors that will determine what the club does.