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Rams, Chargers to play first SoFi Stadium games sans fans

The first SoFi Stadium games will be played with no fans in the stands, as the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers will be in an empty stadium indefinitely.

The Rams were set to open the stadium on Sept. 13 with a Dallas Cowboys matchup, while the Chargers were set to play their first home game on Sept. 20 against the Kansas City Chiefs.

“While we all look forward to coming together to celebrate this new era of sports and entertainment in Los Angeles, the health and safety of our fans, community, players and staff remains our top priority,” read a joint statement issued by the Rams, Chargers and SoFi Stadium. “We will continue to work with LA County Department of Public Health and the City of Inglewood on a plan that, when circumstances permit, safely brings fans to SoFi Stadium and adheres to local, State, CDC and NFL guidelines.

“Should conditions surrounding the coronavirus pandemic significantly improve – and State guidance evolve – to the point we believe fans can safely attend games at SoFi Stadium, we will communicate the news at that time.”

The Rams and Chargers join the Minnesota Vikings today in announcing September games would be played without fans. Right now only four teams have announced plans to allow fans into stadiums for September home games, including the Miami Dolphins.

“While we are doing everything to safely open SoFi Stadium and ultimately fulfill its promise to Rams fans, the NFL and to this region, we know our ability to welcome fans into the building will be guided by the wisdom of health care experts and the policies of local, state and federal government officials. Therefore, we won’t speculate on any timeline as to when fans will be able to join us,” Los Angeles Rams Chairman/Owner Stan Kroenke said in a statement. “The health and well-being of our employees, community and the nation, remains our highest concern.

“Millions across California and the country are on the front lines fighting COVID-19, caring for our neighbors and protecting our communities. We applaud their selfless and tireless heroism and thank them for their many sacrifices. All of us can’t wait until the day we come together to celebrate life and resiliency through sports. Until then, we ask that everyone continue to stay safe and support one another.”

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