OXFORD United fans could be watching matches at the Kassam Stadium before Christmas as coronavirus restrictions are eased in areas with lower infection rates.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed this afternoon that a limited amount of supporters would be allowed back at indoor and outdoor stadia after lockdown finishes on December 2.

Venues in tier one areas can welcome up to 4,000 people, or 50 per cent capacity.

Those in tier two can also be half-full, but only if this is 2,000 people or fewer.

This would apply at the Kassam Stadium if the city remained in the middle of the three tiers, where it was placed shortly before lockdown.

In an announcement this afternoon, the Prime Minister also confirmed outdoor grassroots sports and indoor sports facilities like gyms would be able to reopen.

Johnson said in a statement to the House of Commons: “Spectator sports and business events will be free to resume inside and outside with capacity limits and social distancing, providing more consistency with indoor performances in theatres and concert halls.”

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In an official statement issued via the Deparment for Culture, Media and Sport, culture secretary Oliver Dowden added: “This is a big step forward for sport.

“Bringing grassroots sport back was my number one priority so I’m pleased we are reopening sports and gyms in every tier, in recognition of the significant health benefits.

“I’m also delighted we are able to get the turnstiles turning sooner than expected, taking a cautious approach and starting with the lowest risk areas first.

“I’m confident that sports will take every step to ensure their fans are safe, and fans will play their part and look out for each other until we can safely get everyone back in.”

Spectators had been due to be allowed to return to stadiums from October 1 but the Government pressed pause on that decision due to a rise in infections nationwide.

Last Thursday the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport announced a £300million ‘Winter Survival Package’ of loans and grants to sports which are facing financial losses as a result of the absence of fans from stadiums.