Premier League clubs have agreed to begin contact training as preparations intensify for the resumption of English football next month.
As part of Project Restart, players and staff are tested for coronavirus twice a week, with positive tests forced to self-isolate for seven days.
The 20 Premier League clubs voted unanimously to resume contact training on Wednesday – moving to phase two of “Project Restart”.
Lily:Everything you need to know about the planned return of the English Premier League
“Teams are now able to train in groups and tackle each other while minimizing unnecessary close contact,” the league said in a statement. A date for the return of the league could be agreed later this week, with a restart on June 19 on the table, reports said. Clubs receive millions of television revenues each year through deals with broadcasters, including Sky and BT
as well as international broadcasters. These revenues would be threatened if the season did not resume. Clubs could still be forced to pay a potential £ 330 million rebate to broadcasters even if the season is over, reports have said.
German football returned in May. 16 – the first major European league to do so – with matches played in empty stadiums. Substitutes and non-player staff were forced to sit with masks, while field celebrations were limited to players touching the elbows and, in some cases, dancing from a safe distance. False crowd sounds were added to some of the games broadcast in the United States this weekend, prompting a mixed reaction.
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Premier League fans will certainly be treated when it finally returns with an exceptional TV schedule. Viewers could be scheduled for five consecutive games on Saturdays and Sundays, with matches also scheduled on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, reports said.
Despite plans to return to the field, a number of top players, including Chelsea’s N’Golo Kanté and Watford captain Troy Deeney, have refused to resume training. Sergio Agüero of Manchester City voiced concerns over the resumption of the league.