The Premier League is considering a plan to complete the 2019/20 season by resuming action after June 1, allowing the commencement of the next campaign to start on time.
Action in the top-flight and around the UK was suspended until at least April 30 on Thursday, with the priority at this current stage to finish the current season in its entirety.
The postponement of Euro 2020 for a year opened up the calendar as domestic leagues across Europe consider their next steps amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The news came as a welcome one from a Liverpool point of view as the Reds would be assured of the Premier League title, whenever the time comes to restart the season.
And the Telegraph have reported that the Premier League is “tentatively scheduling a plan” which would involve games resuming after June 1, paving the way for the season to be wrapped up in the space of six weeks.
It would enable the 2020/21 season to kick off as scheduled on August 8, where four weeks would be allocated for rest and preparation for the following campaign – with a signposted finish date for the current season of July 11.
June 1, is close to ten weeks away and amid uncertain times there is no guarantee that it would be safe or possible to do so, with the report stating that the timeframe “remains a target rather than anything approaching a certainty.”
With the UK shutting down various sectors to control the spread and emergency personnel in high demand, the sanctioning of emergency crews at grounds would likely remain in short supply and would prove a significant stumbling block.
Moreover, the “games would be behind closed doors” in what is a “universally accepted proviso” amid all clubs in order to be able to finish the season.
In the plan, the conclusion of the FA Cup is also seen as a priority, as the league looks to satisfy the contractual agreements of broadcasters, as they face a £762m penalty fee if they fail to do so.
This plan would see players whose contract expires after June 30, Adam Lallana being the notable name for Liverpool, require an extension to which many do not view as an issue which cannot be overcome, with the Atheltic’s David Ornstein suggesting the contracts could be “week-by-week deals.”
This particular set of plans would see the Premier League and the EFL resume 12 weeks after games were first postponed.
But with the situation in a constant state of flux it is hard to see a definitive date placed on the Premier League’s return in the immediate future with the UK yet to hit the peak of the virus.
It feels inevitable, however, that whenever football does return that it will be behind closed doors.