Another day, another return for a major soccer league in Europe. This time, it’s England’s Premier League, as multiple reports indicate that the world’s top footballing league has a date set to restart following its hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Prem is slated to make its return on June 17, a date that reportedly received the green light during a shareholders meeting on Thursday. According to ESPN FC, a pair of matches will occur on that day — Manchester City hosting Arsenal and Sheffield United traveling to take on Aston Villa — before an all-out sprint will occur. The proposed end date is August 1, with the English FA holding one last match, the FA Cup final, on August 8.
Several clubs are thought to have expressed a desire for four more weeks’ preparation having only approved contact training in a vote on Wednesday, but the league’s desire to resume sooner in addition to pressure from UEFA to complete domestic matches by the beginning of August forced a compromise.
In terms of crowning a champion, few leagues need to resume less than the Premier League. Liverpool sits atop the table on 82 points, with Manchester City (57 points) being the only club that can mathematically catch them. That, however, is not going to happen, as the Reds need six points from their remaining nine matches in order to clinch the title. Having said that, there are still a handful of other things that need to be decided, primarily positions for next year’s various European competitions, so instead of going the way of France’s Ligue 1, the Premier League will make its way back in less than a month.