Premier League

Premier League and EFL suspended in England due to the spread of coronavirus

Elite football in England has been suspended till at least April 3 due to the spread of coronavirus.

All games in Premier League, Women’s Super League, Women’s Championship, and EFL in England, plus in Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, are postponed.

The play of Premier League will start on 4 April, depending on the conditions at the time.

Football Association Chairman Greg Clarke has expressed his fear at the emergency meeting last Friday that the season might have to be abandoned.

The international friendly matches between England and Italy due to on March 27 and Denmark four days later are off.

The EFL hopes to resume play one day earlier than the Premier League on April 3. The EFL said it was advised that clubs had better suspend non-essential activities like fan meetings, player appearances, and training ground visits.

Since FIFA recommended that all impending internationals had better to be called off, the UEFA Euro 2020 play-offs might also be postponed, too.

Northern Ireland, Scotland, and the Republic are all planned to play their semi-finals on March 26 and the finals five days later.

Late on Thursday, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was announced to have tested positive for the coronavirus, and then early on Friday, Chelsea striker Callum Hudson-Odoi also revealed that he had been affected. Meanwhile, a first-team player of Everton is said to have shown symptoms.

Earlier this week, some clubs, including Chelsea, Manchester City, Leicester City, Arsenal, Bournemouth, Real Madrid, and Juventus, revealed that they have some or even all of their staff in self-isolation.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Thursday that suspending major public events like sporting fixtures was considered by the government but would be a measure to protect public services rather than delay the spread.

Meanwhile, the EFL said although this decision had not been lightly taken, they had to prioritize the health of players, staff and supporters as well as acknowledge the national efforts in tackling this outbreak.

Football has also been suspended in Spain, France, Italy, Portugal, the Netherlands, and the USA.