Rio restarts soccer league next to field hospital for COVID

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Copa Libertadores champion Flamengo and tiny Bangu were to play at the empty Maracanã Stadium Thursday night in the first professional soccer match in South America for almost three months.

Only a few meters (yards) away, by the arena’s gate 2, a field hospital with 400 beds for COVID-19 patients reminds the few spectators why many health experts think it is too soon for soccer competition to resume.

More than 47,700 people have died because of the new coronavirus in Brazil, and nearly 1 million have been infected. Rio de Janeiro state accounts for about 8,000 deaths, but authorities agreed to let soccer return this week after the number of available intensive-care unit beds
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