Newcastle Eagles will be allowed to have fans at a preseason game on September 18.

The UK Government has announced that the Eagles Community Arena will be one of a number of sporting events included within a series of tests to bring spectators back to sporting events in England.

A statement said: “The events have been selected to test a range of different event styles across the country’s major men’s and women’s spectator sports. A number of successful pilots have already been completed as part of the programme’s initial phase including snooker at the Crucible and cricket at Edgbaston and the Oval.

“The initial tranche of pilots listed below will take place over the coming weeks, building up throughout September with a view to a full reopening for fans in October.

“The pilots will only take place if the latest scientific and medical advice allows for them to proceed in a Covid-secure way, and will be paused again if the advice suggests that conditions in the local area are not met.”

No details of who the Eagles will face in the friendly have been announced.

Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Oliver Dowden, said: “I know fans and their teams can’t wait to be reunited in stadia across the country but it’s imperative we take a cautious and phased approach to get fans back in safely.

“I’m pleased that infection rates have levelled off enough to resume the pilot programme and we will continue to work intensively with sports, medical and health and safety experts towards welcoming more fans back as fast as we can.”

It is expected that spectators will be allowed on a wider basis in October in England with Scotland scheduled for further opening in September.

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