Egypt is to kick off on Saturday the local Premier League one year after it was suspended over deadly riots, state-run television reported on its website.

The fixtures are to be at army stadiums without fans, added the report, reflecting fears about new violence.

The previous season was suspended in February last year after 74 people were killed in riots at a stadium in the coastal city of Port Said, following a match between the home team and Cairo’s al-Ahly.

Egyptian authorities had suspended the new season of the competition several times after street protests from die-hard fans, known as the ultras, who demanded that those responsible for the Port Said deaths be punished.

A court last week sentenced 21 Port Said supporters to death for their role in the riot. The ruling sparked violent protests in the coastal city, which killed 38 people.

The first match is to pit title holders al-Ahly against Ghazl al-Mahla of the Delta industrial city of al-Mahla at a military stadium near Cairo.

The competition is divided into two groups, each comprising nine teams.