The Premier League, FA, EFL and FA now joining UEFA and other European organisations in suspending football matches until April 3, as a result of COVID-19
The English organisations held an emergency meeting on Friday after members from Arsenal, Manchester City and Chelsea either tested positive for COVID-19 or were placed under self-quarantine due to exposure to the deadly virus.
The English organisations consisting of the Premier League, FA, EFL, Barclays FA Women’s Super League and FA Women’s Championship decided to suspend all games until April 3.
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“This action, which will be kept under constant review, has been taken due to the increasing numbers of Clubs taking steps to isolate their players and staff because of the COVID-19 virus.”
“The postponements include all matches in the Championship, League One and League Two, as well as all Academy and youth team fixtures.
“In addition, clubs are being advised to suspend indefinitely all non-essential activities which include, but are not limited to, player appearances, training ground visits and fan meetings.
“Whilst the EFL board has continued to take the advice and guidance offered by the Government and its health advisors, emerging developments mean now is the time to implement football’s contingency plans in response to the crisis.
“A further update on these plans will be given post an EFL board meeting next week.
“This decision has not been taken lightly, but the EFL must prioritise the health and well-being of players, staff and supporters while also acknowledging the Government’s national efforts in tackling this outbreak.” was the statement given by Mark Rowan who is the EFL communications director.
Premier League Clubs Affected So Far
Arsenal – Mikel Arteta tests positive for Coronavirus while staff and players implement self-quarantine procedures.
Everton – One player placed in self-quarantine
Watford – Several players report feeling unwell
Bournemouth -Goalkeeper Artur Boruc and 5 members of technical staff placed under self-quarantine
Leicester City – Three players in self-quarantine after displaying COVID-19 symptoms.
Chelsea – Callum Hudson-Odoi tests positive for COVID-19
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UEFA And The Rest Of Europe
La Liga, Ligue 1, and Serie A had already suspended all scheduled games for at least the next 2 weeks when UEFA announced on Friday that it would be suspending all European Club football over the next two weeks which will include Champions League, Europa League and the UEFA Youth League.
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UEFA will meet next week to map a way forward regarding European competitions which also include the Euro 2020 which could now be scrapped until next season.
The Scottish FA has also suspended all games until further notice.
The German Football League has decided to allow this weekend’s scheduled football game sot go ahead as planned behind closed doors, only suspending matches as of Tuesday 17 March.
The financial ramifications caused by COVID-19 is going to hit clubs worldwide as Peterborough owner Darragh MacAnthony went onto tell talkSPort
“I would guess-timate the average League One and Two club is probably going to need a loan of £300k to £400k each. There’s enough money in football. We need to come together and make sure nobody goes under because of this virus.”
The Irish FA have also announced that they will be suspending all domestic and grassroots level football matches until April 4.
The FA and Premier League chiefs will just have to wait and the virus begins to be contained by the end of the suspension should they have any hope of finishing up the season.