The return of football in the UK has edged one step closer. All 20 Premier League clubs voted unanimously to return to training.
A conference call was held on Monday between the Premier League, health experts, and a representative from each club. Therefore, all clubs can return to training on Tuesday, May 19, in small groups.
The Premier League released a statement about the decisions taken by the league and its clubs. “This first stage has been agreed in consultation with players, managers, Premier League club doctors, independent experts, and the government,” the Premier League stated.
“The health and wellbeing of all participants in the Premier League’s priority, and the safe return to training is a step-by-step process,” they added.
In addition, Premier League medical adviser Mark Gillett said, “We’re going to be looking to make the same kind of cultural changes at training grounds and in footballers’ behaviors whether we have this conversation now or at any point this year. It is important that people understand that.”
Nevertheless, all protocols followed by clubs are in combination with government regulations such as social distancing.
Frank Lampard released a statement on the Chelsea website about how Chelsea will implement phase one.
“We’re only allowed a certain number of people at the training ground. We’re very fortunate that we have a huge complex at Cobham. But it will be minimal numbers of staff which means we won’t be able to work with the players like normal,” the Chelsea boss said.
Likewise, Manchester United, Everton and Liverpool are set to return to their bases on Wednesday to start training in small groups. However, Leicester City players reported to their training base to be tested for COVID-19 on Monday.