(Reuters) - Brighton & Hove Albion are donating a minimum of 1,000 tickets for workers from Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) to thank them for their role fighting the coronavirus.
The Premier League is currently suspended until at least April 30 after the pandemic brought sport worldwide to a virtual standstill.
Brighton’s chief executive and deputy chairman Paul Barber said the gesture was one way of showing their appreciation to the NHS staff, who Prime Minister Boris Johnson has warned could soon be overwhelmed in the face of rising numbers of deaths.
“We feel this is a small way in which we can show our gratitude for those NHS staff on the front line who are fighting the battle on behalf of all of us and give them something to look forward to,” Barber said on Wednesday.
“Of course the biggest support we can all show our NHS heroes is by following the crucial government advice on social distancing, self-isolating, hand hygiene and using tissues to catch, kill and bin coughs and sneezes.”
Brighton invited other Premier League, EFL, Scottish and Northern Irish clubs to get involved. Fellow south coast club Bournemouth pledged to donate at least 1,000 tickets.
“The club ... will ensure the match tickets will reach the hands of our heroic doctors, nurses and countless other medical staff putting the wellbeing of others over their own health,” the club said.
Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Alison Williams