English Premier League Sets Hopeful Return Date for June 17
“Project Restart” got the green light at a Premier League shareholders’ meeting today, which sets the league’s return for Wed. June 17.
The first two fixtures will be Manchester City vs. Arsenal and Aston Villa vs. Sheffield United. The remaining 90 games will start up two days later on June 19.
Premier League Chief Executive Richard Masters made the announcement saying “Today we have provisionally agreed to resume the Premier League on Wednesday 17 June. But this date cannot be confirmed until we have met all the safety requirements needed, as the health and welfare of all participants and supporters is our priority.”
Masters also acknowledged games will have to take place without fans in stadiums.
The goal is for all fixtures to be complete by Aug. 1. “After that date, the FA Cup can then be completed — with the final anticipated on Aug. 8 — in addition to the remaining Champions League and Europa League fixtures, assuming the coronavirus pandemic has subsided to the extent international travel is allowed” according to ESPN.
The Worldwide Leader also reports several teams “expressed a desire for four more weeks’ preparation”. However, the Premier League’s “desire to resume sooner in addition to pressure from UEFA to complete domestic matches by the beginning of August forced a compromise.”
COVID-19 testing capacity will be increased from 50 to 60 per team. Any positive tests will require a person to self-isolate for seven days.
It will be 100 days from the last matches played when the league resumes on June 17. Liverpool lead the Premier League table by 25 points when play was suspended.