The English Premier League now appears to be on course for a return in June, after positive talks took place between the government and key English football governing bodies.
Earlier this week, The Premier League Executives convened to discuss the League’s Project Restart Plan with June 12 set aside as the resumption date. Part of the plan states that the remaining fixtures would be played behind closed doors.
On Thursday, May 14, 2020, a meeting was also held between the British Government, England Football Association, The Premier League, and English Football League to discuss the return of The English Premier League.
At the close of the meeting, UK Secretary of State for Culture, Oliver Dowden, revealed that the meeting was fruitful. Also he said that it was discussed in the meeting to include wider access to enable football fans to have live coverage.
Furthermore, Oliver Dowden said: “We all came to the conclusion that we will only make progress with the Project Restart Plan if the medical safety and welfare of the players, coaches and club staffs is feasible.”
Thursday’s meeting was adjourned to Monday, May 18, 2020, when EPL players return to begin the group training phase while observing the social distancing protocols.
All this while, the players have been training individually but would have to adjust to a 75-minute training under uncompromising regulations when the group training begins next week.
Meanwhile, England’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Jonathan Van-Tam, said: “There would be small, carefully measured, step-wise approach, to see what can be achieved safely. The first step among others is for a safe return to training while observing social distancing.”
He also said: “We will have to see how this goes before considering the return of competitive football matches.”
The English Premier League was suspended in March due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic. If the group training phase is successful, the league is likely to resume in June with most teams having nine games left to play.