Like most other sports leagues on the planet, the English Premier League is on an extended hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the fact that the league has all but decided who will be its champion, and despite two major footballing leagues in Europe ending its seasons altogether, the Premier League is motivated to pick up where it left off, giving teams the opportunity to play the final nine or 10 games on everyone’s schedules.
Premier League Shareholders held a meeting on Friday, one which which they mapped out how the rest of this season could potentially look. In a statement, it was announced that while the top priority is making sure those involved in the league are healthy, everyone is in agreement that the goal is to conclude this campaign.
No decisions were taken at today’s Shareholders’ meeting and clubs exchanged views on the information provided regarding “Project Restart”.
It was agreed that the PFA, LMA, players and managers are key to this process and will be further consulted.
The clubs reconfirmed their commitment to finishing the 2019/20 season, maintaining integrity of the competition and welcomed the Government’s support.
The news comes days after France’s Ligue 1 called its season and crowned Paris Saint-Germain champions and a week following the Dutch Eredivisie opting to cancel this year and not name a champion. England is in a spot where it could afford to do the former — currently, Liverpool sit in first place on 82 points, while Manchester City are in second on 57 points. The Reds are two wins away from securing a title, and seeing as how an unparalleled catastrophe is assuredly not going to happen, it would be hard to fault the Premier League for opting to just name them champions if they go that route.
Things are a little more complex with spots in Europe — the top-4 automatically qualify for Champions League, Nos. 5 and 6 automatically make Europa League, and No. 7 goes to Europa League qualifying. The clubs in 18th, 19th, and 20th are also relegated to the Championship, another gigantic can of worms that would need to be dealt with.
There’s no set date for when the league would start back up, but reports out of England indicate the target date is June 8.