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San Jose Earthquakes locker room access to remain closed due to coronavirus

Could be the first of many changes if virus spreads.

MLS: All-Star Team Training and Media Availability Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

The San Jose Earthquakes opened the doors for their last home game, on Saturday against Minnesota United, although the rain and the spread of coronavirus locally meant people were advised to not go into large crowds, and left the attendance rather sparse as a result.

But while the game wasn’t postponed or held behind closed doors, a new advisory came down on Monday from MLS and other active North Americans sports leagues, moving to close locker room access to all but players and essential personnel.

What does this mean? MLS teams at the weekend were advised to use their discretion in choosing to allow locker room access to media or not, and the Quakes chose not to, instead offering players for media availability outside the locker rooms.

For fans, this might seem like extreme inside baseball, since media access doesn’t really imapct non-media all that much. That’s true, although there may be a reduction in choice quotes, we’ll see. But more important, this could be the first indication that more changes, even on up to closed-door and/or postponed or canceled games, could be on tap if coronavirus continues to spread.

On that note, Sam Stejskal reported in The Athletic on Monday that should teams need to alter their gameday flow, they would prefer to postpone games over playing them behind closed doors, for revenue reasons. Read more at The Athletic.

Locally, the Quakes will be on the road this weekend, as they’ll play the Philadelphia Union in Pennsylvania on Saturday. Their next home game is March 21 against Sporting Kansas City. Will more changes to gameday operations occur in the meantime? We’ll keep an eye on things and offer updates if they occur.

What do you think? Are you thinking hard about whether you want to attend games coming up due to coronavirus? Let’s chat in the comments below.