Coronavirus: Premier League, FA, EFL agree to postpone English fixtures until at least April 30

It’s unclear when the Premier League will return as England and the rest of the world deal with the coronavirus pandemic. But one thing is clear — play won’t resume before late April. The Premier League, in a joint statement with the FA, EFL and women’s professional game on Thursday, announced that the leagues are suspended until at least April 30

Most other leagues in Europe have also stopped playing after UEFA announced that Euro 2020 has been postponed a year and that leagues will target June 30 to complete their seasons. Here’s part of the statement from the league:  

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”.

Additionally, we have collectively agreed that the professional game in England will be further postponed until no earlier than 30 April. 

Chelsea player Callum Hudson-Odoi and Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta both have tested positive for the virus, and the Premier League suspended play on March 13 with 110 matches remaining. Liverpool leads the league by 25 points and was expected to win the title sometime in March or early April but now will have to wait. The release specifically says that each competition shall determine the length of its own playing season, so we could very well see a shortened Premier League campaign. That wouldn’t impact the title race much at all but it could when it comes to battling for European spots. Currently, four teams are separated by five points for fourth place, with Chelsea three points ahead of fifth-place Manchester United. 

Whenever the league does resume, that would be assuming that the coronavirus situation has improved and that health officials have deemed it acceptable to continue play. For more on the cornavirus situation throughout the world, check out CBS News’ coverage here.

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