Coronavirus UK: Clubs anticipate seismic financial blows as Premier League plans to leave the season
Top clubs anticipate seismic financial blows as Premier League plans to leave the season and government wants to ban massive rallies to curb coronavirus spread
- Premier League clubs will end the season amid the chaos of the corona virus
- Managers of all 20 clubs will hold a conference call on Thursday
- The EPL can relegate the current bottom three or growing league to 22 teams
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
A growing number of Premier League clubs are willing to leave this season as the government prepares to ban mass gatherings under a series of new measures to fight the corona virus, making a rapid resumption of the sport almost impossible.
Executives from all 20 clubs will hold a conference call on Thursday to discuss the next steps following last week’s decision to suspend all football until April 3. Several clubs believe that early termination of the campaign is a price worth paying for greater long-term security.
The financial and legal implications of such a move would be seismic, but many clubs think they may not have an option after being instructed that restrictions could be in place until the end of July.
Premier League clubs are considering ending the season during the corona virus outbreak
Resuming the 2019-20 season after that point would pose difficulties, even if the clubs agreed to shorten the next campaign, not least because many player contracts expire on June 30.
The Premier League’s official position is that they will attempt to complete the season to maintain the integrity of the competition and protect their £ 3 billion a year TV contracts, but they expect to hear some alternative views.
While there is little serious opposition to Liverpool being crowned champions when the season is ended, the solution to the relegation issue would be more controversial.
Options include relegating the current bottom three of Aston Villa, Bournemouth and Norwich, breaking down relegation this season or moving to a 22-team Premier League next season, with no one going down and the Championship top two are promoted from West Bromwich Albion and Leeds.
Leeds could be promoted as a result of a move to a 22-team Premier League
However, all three scenarios would be bitterly contested by those who were disappointed and could take legal action, while allocating seats in the Champions League would also be problematic.
The Premier League, EFL and FA have been discussing organizing behind-the-door matches to close the season and honor broadcasting contracts, but given the rapid spread of the virus over the past week, many clubs are wondering if such a measure is possible or desirable.
There are also widespread concerns about the safety of players, many of whom are understandably reluctant to play.
Former English captain Wayne Rooney complained on Sunday that players had been treated like guinea pigs, and even those clubs that have not taken self-isolating measures have ordered the majority of staff to work from home.
Wayne Rooney complained on Sunday that players had been treated like guinea pigs
With plans to limit the number of visitors to 500, doubts have also arisen as to whether it is possible to organize games with so few attendees, given the number required to monitor broadcasting, catering and other health and safety measures. ease.
There are also doubts about the use of valuable NHS resources, such as ambulances, that clubs need in every match.
Several clubs will insist on a decision during this week’s meeting, rather than agreeing to action on an unspecified future date, as they long for certainty.
The transfer window is a major concern for many clubs, who cannot cope with opening up the market without knowing which division they will be in next season.