The Premier League Returns!
The BBC has reported that Premier League football will return the 17th of June with the two games in hand: Aston Villa vs. Sheffield United and Manchester City vs. Arsenal. A full round of fixtures will then be played from the 19th June to the 21st, and hopefully the season will be played out in the summer.
The last Premier League game was on the 9th March, when Leicester beat Aston Villa 4-0 so it will be over three months since the season has been postponed. Normally, a victor would have been crowned already, so Liverpool fans will be happy to hear the news, as they have been running away with the league this far.
The return of the Premier League was discussed on Thursday at a meeting with representatives from all clubs, and apparently, all clubs have in principle agreed to resuming the season, although it is subject to government approval. So far, the government has not clearly pronounced itself either way, so a wait will be necessary before the league can be guaranteed to come back. Non-contact training resumed last week, and it has now been unanimously agreed that contact training can begin again.
It looks very likely that the games will be played home and away as usual. An alternative method of using neutral grounds for high profile games has been requested by the police, however a number of clubs have rejected this idea, including Brighton and West Ham.
There will be continued testing for the Covid-19 virus, as there has been up to now, with more staff members and players being tested. In the fourth phase of the resumption phase, 60 people will be tested every week, and if positive, will self- isolate for a week.
Whilst some have been excited by the news, it is not welcomed by all members of the public and even the players. N’golo Kante and Troy Deeney have both decided that the risk of the virus is more important than football because of their family ties. Kante has always been known as a very humble character, so it is no surprise that he’s putting his family before himself and football.
Unfortunately for non Liverpool fans, the league could be decided on the Premier League’s return on the 17th June. If Arsenal manage to beat Manchester City, then it will be mathematically impossible for them to make what would be a phenomenal comeback. Arsenal are quite unlikely to get a result however, with very poor form against any members of the top 6, and particularly Manchester City. Mikel Arteta has improved the club since his arrival and pundits have been impressed by a new sense of purpose that some of the players have had. Attitudes have changed at Arsenal say the insiders, and players like Granit Xhaka embody that recently, winning some fans back over. Guardiola’s team will likely be too strong, with a plethora of world class players in their ranks, namely Kevin de Bruyne, possibly the world’s best midfielder.
Leicester fans will be hoping that the break in the season is exactly what their team needs. Impressing many early in the season, results were starting not to go their way before the season was postponed but they will be confident in their ability to beat
Aston Villa. However, with this unprecedented break in football, it is very difficult to predict anything that will happen. As seen in the Bundesliga, some of the top teams can start to slip up and some of the bottom teams can improve massively.
Whilst some have been excited by the news, it is not welcomed by all members of the public and even the players. The global pandemic that we’re currently experiencing has changed every day life for the UK massively, and it is obvious that people want a return to normalcy. However, it also needs to be treated very carefully, lives and economies are on the line. N’golo Kante and Troy Deeney have both decided that the risk of the virus is more important than football because of their family ties. Kante has always been known as a very humble character, so it is no surprise that he is putting his family before himself and football.