Premier League Could Be Cancelled if Clubs Fail to Agree on Neutral Venues

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‘Project restart’ in the English Premier League could hit a serious brick wall if the League Managers Association (LCA) does not put its house in order before May 12, when all club owners are expected to meet to finalise the plans for resumption.

According to the League Managers Association chief executive, Richard Bevan, if the association fails to vote in favour of completing the 2019-2020 season at neutral venues, it might lead to outright cancellation of the season.

It is almost two months since the Premier League was put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic ravaging the United Kingdom.

Clubs and the league governing body (EFL) have been so determined to restart the season. They have been working with a proposal tagged “Project restart” to work out a possible formation for the resumption of the season.

One of the recommendations in the proposal which is beginning to look very controversial is playing the remaining 92 fixtures at neutral venues.

A couple of clubs, especially from the bottom part of the league table, have been kicking against the possibility of playing at natural venues.

The explanation that playing at neutral venues would help to checkmate or prevent fans from breaching the social distancing law in the UK has not sounded strong enough to those clubs.

15th placed Brighton was the first club to kick against the idea, followed by Aston Villa. They are citing the fact that they might lose £200 million in revenues if they are relegated for playing away from their home grounds.

Cancellation of the Premier League: Threat or Fact

League Managers Association chief executive of the Premier League Richard Bevan,
League Managers Association chief executive of the Premier League Richard Bevan,

In what could be taken as a fact and at the same time as a threat, the League Managers Association chief executive, Richard Bevan, said the 2019-20 Premier League season could be cancelled if clubs do not agree to play in neutral venues.

Bevan said the clubs owners don’t need to waste much time because clubs supposed to have returned to training in preparation for the resumption of the season by at least June 12.

“The government, if they haven’t already, will be making it clear that home matches with densely populated stadia, really puts into question whether social distancing rules can be adhered to”, Bevan told the BBC.

In any case, it will take more than Brighton and Aston Villa to stop the Premier League from playing at neutral venues as the idea needs the votes of just 14 clubs out of 20 to stand.

Meanwhile, whatever decision the clubs owners agree on might be rooted upon the nationwide address of the Prime Minister of the UK, Boris Johnson, which is scheduled to take place on Sunday, May 11.