Southampton and Brighton to enter Tier 4 from Boxing Day

Southampton and Brighton will enter Tier 4 of coronavirus restrictions from Boxing Day following a rise in the number of coronavirus cases in the area.

Both sides will not be allowed to have any fans attend their home games, leaving Liverpool and Everton as the only two remaining Premier League teams permitted to allow up to 2,000 fans into their grounds.

Several areas in the east, South East and parts of the South West of England will be placed in Tier 4 to battle the growing number of coronavirus cases, Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced on Wednesday.

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Hancock says cases have risen across the country by 57 per cent in the last week, with hospital admissions at the highest level since April.

The health secretary says against this backdrop, it is “absolutely vital that we act”.

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the creation of Tier 4 on Saturday – the toughest level of regional restrictions intended to clamp down on COVID-19 hotspots.

It came after a new coronavirus variant was credited with pushing infection numbers to record high levels.

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