The FA, Premier League, EFL and women’s professional game, together with the PFA and LMA, have released a joint statement in the last few moments to update football fans following the recent suspension of all play in England.
It had been previously agreed last Friday that Premier League football would not return until April 4th, however today’s announcement confirms that no professional football in England will resume before April 30th as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
They also state that the 2019/20 season will be extended beyond June 1 “indefinitely” – which suggests there remains a strong desire to play out this season to its completion.
Read their joint statement in full below:
The FA, Premier League, EFL and women’s professional game, together with the PFA and LMA, understand we are in unprecedented times and our thoughts are with everyone affected by COVID-19.
We are united in our commitment to finding ways of resuming the 2019/20 football season and ensuring all domestic and European club league and cup matches are played as soon as it is safe and possible to do so.
We have collectively supported UEFA in postponing EURO 2020 to create space in the calendar to ensure domestic and European club league and cup matches have an increased opportunity to be played and, in doing so, maintain the integrity of each competition.
The FA’s Rules and Regulations state that “the season shall terminate not later than the 1 June” and “each competition shall, within the limit laid down by The FA, determine the length of its own playing season”.
However, The FA’s Board has agreed for this limit to be extended indefinitely for the 2019/20 season in relation to Professional Football.
Additionally, we have collectively agreed that the professional game in England will be further postponed until no earlier than 30 April.
The progress of COVID-19 remains unclear and we can reassure everyone the health and welfare of players, staff and supporters are our priority. We will continue to follow Government advice and work collaboratively to keep the situation under review and explore all options available to find ways of resuming the season when the conditions allow.
We would all like to re-emphasise that our thoughts are with everyone affected by COVID-19.
This comes after all organisations held an emergency meeting at 10.30am this morning to discuss the plans going forward, with the extended suspension of games seeming inevitable as the country prepares to go into lockdown.
With this in mind, our fixtures against Bournemouth (A), West Ham (H) and Watford (A) which were initially scheduled to take place next month, have now been postponed.
That said, the statement suggests we should still see our FA Cup quarter final vs Man City at some stage – we just don’t know when!