Daily Express

I’M FEEL­ING EMPTY NOW

Care wor­ried fam­ily may never see him play again with fu­ture bleak for ‘ big clubs’

- By Alex Spink Sports · Rugby · Boris Johnson · England · Saudi Arabia · Harlequins Rugby League · Twickenham

DANNY CARE fears his fam­ily might not see him play live again af­ter the Gov­ern­ment post­poned the re­turn of fans to sports events.

The 33- year- old is near­ing the end of his sparkling ca­reer and Boris John­son’s ad­mis­sion that there could be empty sta­di­ums for the next six months has the Eng­land scrum- half deeply con­cerned.

Care said: “The thought has crossed my mind that I might not play in front of a full house again.

“I joked a while ago with my mum and dad, who have watched me through­out my whole ca­reer, that they might not ever see me play again. It’s not so funny now.

“I’m a glass- half- full type of per­son and I’m telling my­self some sort of com­mon sense will pre­vail and they will let fans in sooner rather than later.

“I just hope I’m right be­cause some rugby clubs I think are gen­uinely in trou­ble.

And I’m talk­ing Premier­ship clubs. That’s scary. The stark re­al­ity I think is that big clubs could be no more. I’m sure club own­ers are re­ally pan­ick­ing.”

Sara­cens boss Mark McCall, above, agreed, say­ing: “It doesn’t take a ge­nius to guess that if Eng­land don’t get crowds dur­ing the au­tumn and the Premier­ship don’t start hav­ing crowds be­fore Christ­mas, it’s go­ing to be a re­ally wor­ry­ing time. It’s very se­ri­ous.”

Care’s frus­tra­tion is height­ened by the fact his club Har­lequins staged a suc­cess­ful pi­lot game against Bath in front of 2,700 fans ear­lier this month.

“Quins put on a bril­liant event, proved it can be done and can be done safely,” he said. “To hear this news now is so de­flat­ing for ev­ery­one.

“Let’s be hon­est it’s aw­ful play­ing with no fans. It doesn’t feel like a proper game.

“We played a cup fi­nal on Mon­day night in front of no one. You’ve got to try to find a way of get­ting your­self mo­ti­vated.

“Of course, you can do it but there’s so many times you need to draw on the crowd, es­pe­cially in big games.

“I can’t imag­ine what in­ter­na­tio in­ter­na­tion­als are go­ing to be like in Nov Novem­ber if th there’s no one th there.”

Care in­sists p play­ers “to­tally u un­der­stand” that sa safety has to be put first first.

“O Ob­vi­ously, we want to play i in front of fans,” he said. “But no player is silly enough to say just let 80,000 into Twick­en­ham. We’re not say­ing that.

“How­ever, peo­ple live for the week­end, whether their sport is foot­ball, cricket or rugby.

“If it can be shown that you can do it safely, you’d hope we’d be able to; you’d hope there would be some com­mon sense ap­plied. Let’s do it, let’s help save rugby – be­cause the bleak­ness of the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion is that it could be re­ally dark for a few clubs.”

 ?? Pic­ture: STEVE BARDENS ?? GAME’S UP: Care feels Quins showed that fans could be man­aged safely dur­ing the pi­lot against Bath
Pic­ture: STEVE BARDENS GAME’S UP: Care feels Quins showed that fans could be man­aged safely dur­ing the pi­lot against Bath
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