It’s official: the Premier League has been suspended.
Fixtures in England’s top-flight have been postponed for the next three weeks until Saturday, April 4 due to the spread of coronavirus.
The decision was reached during an emergency meeting between the Premier League and its clubs on Friday morning.
A statement reads:
“Following a meeting of Shareholders today, it was unanimously decided to suspend the Premier League with the intention of returning on 4 April, subject to medical advice and conditions at the time.
“Premier League Chief Executive Richard Masters said: ‘Above all, we wish Mikel Arteta and Callum Hudson-Odoi speedy recoveries, and everyone else affected by COVID-19.’
“In this unprecedented situation, we are working closely with our clubs, Government, The FA and EFL and can reassure everyone the health and welfare of players, staff and supporters are our priority.
“Despite the challenges, it is the Premier League’s aim is to reschedule the displaced fixtures, including those played by Academy sides, when it is safe to do so.”
The news comes less than 24 hours after it was announced that this weekend’s fixtures were to go ahead.
But late on Thursday night, Arsenal announced that head coach Mikel Arteta has tested positive for COVID-19.
Therefore the Gunners have told the full first-team squad and coaching staff to self-isolate after having close contact with the manager.
Once Arsenal’s statement was released, it became increasingly clear that the Premier League cannot continue.
It has now followed other European leagues – including Serie A and La Liga – in halting competition.
Despite fixtures being postponed, we are yet to have official word on what it means for the conclusion of the season.
According to journalist Miguel Delaney, a number of clubs feel this campaign should be voided and they would have voiced that opinion during Friday morning’s meeting.
Look away now, Liverpool fans…
- Callum Hudson-Odoi tests positive for coronavirus
- Some top-flight clubs want Premier League season voided
- Arsenal confirm Mikel Arteta has coronavirus