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Coronavirus: Premier League clubs reconfirm commitment to finishing season but no decision reached

5 months ago
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Reports said the Premier League could be back within weeks but as yet a decision has not been made.

The Premier League has reconfirmed the commitment of its clubs to resuming the 2019-20 season when it is safe to do so but insists a decision has yet to be reached.

Reports earlier this week said England's top flight, which was halted in March as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, could return within weeks.

United Kingdom prime minister Boris Johnson was reportedly briefed on a plan to play games behind closed doors and potentially even at a neutral venue in a bid to boost morale with the country still under lockdown measures.

A meeting of Premier League shareholders took place on Friday in which the next steps were discussed for what it has dubbed 'Project Restart'.

The Premier League said it welcomes the support of the government but as yet there is no definitive return date.

"At a meeting of Premier League shareholders today, clubs discussed possible steps towards planning to resume the 2019-20 season, when it is safe and appropriate to do so," a Premier League statement read.

"It was reiterated that the thoughts of all are with those directly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, the Premier League's priority is the health and safety of players, coaches, managers, club staff, supporters and the wider community.

"The League and clubs are considering the first tentative moves forward and will only return to training and playing with government guidance, under expert medical advice and after consultation with players and managers. The league welcomed the creation of the government medical working group for a return of elite sport, which met for the first time this morning.

"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 [Professional Footballers' Association], LMA [League Managers Association], 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 Eredivisie and Ligue 1 opted to cancel the remainder of their seasons but several of Europe's top leagues are still seeking solutions to complete campaigns.

It was confirmed on Thursday the German government had delayed a decision on when the Bundesliga can restart until May 6, while Lega Serie A reportedly revealed on Friday its 20 clubs had unanimously agreed to complete the season.

Liverpool were 25 points clear of second-place Manchester City prior to the Premier League's suspension. 

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