Report: Premier League clubs discuss 40-day window
Multiple reports from The Times and the BBC claim that the latest Premier League club meeting discussed a 40-day window to complete the season.
Details have started to leak out since the video conference call on Friday as initially it was stated that discussions focused on how it would be safe to return and test players and staff amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Our partners at Sky Sports detailed the key factors in deciding when the Premier League season could resume after it was suspended on March 13. The will of all 20 clubs is still to complete the 2019-20 season but no firm date to have it finished by has been suggested.
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The main focus from the PL is to not put more stress on medical supplies and the NHS. However, if widespread COVID-19 testing is available by the time the Premier League is ready to return from suspension, games in empty stadiums would be possible.
It is believed the remaining 92 games could be completed in a 40-day window from June 8 until late July as 16 teams have nine games left to play and four have 10 games remaining. That June 8 date is seen as being very ambitious and the earliest possible date the season could resume as talks continue with the UK government.
The UK is under lockdown until May 7 after it was extended by three weeks earlier this week, so Premier League clubs will not be able to return to training until then at the earliest.
When the domestic season is finished, the plan is then to switch the focus to the Champions League and Europa League as the finals of those competitions could reportedly take place in late August.
The next Premier League club meeting takes place on May 1 and by then they will have more details from UEFA to discuss, plus the Bundesliga in Germany will have also mapped out how they can return to action as their teams have already returned to training.
There’s no doubt that even a return to action in empty stadiums will be tough for Premier League clubs to organize from a logistical and medical standpoint, but the building blocks are being put in place as to exactly how they could return.
Completing the remaining games in a six-week window from mid-June is doable and the biggest remaining issues to resolve would be how to keep players in a bubble and away from spreading COVID-19 further, plus how to deal with players who are out of contract on July 1.