Like the rest of the world, football has been thrown into chaos in recent weeks over the outbreak of the coronavirus. Most leagues around the world have been put on pause with extension dates unknown. Football associations have been looking to FIFA for guidance on what to do in regard to bringing seasons to a conclusion. And it looks as though the governing body look poised to answer.
FIFA will confirm an indefinite extension to the 2019/20 season giving each individual country the power to determine when and if their campaign will start. This announcement will be well received amongst countries no longer bound by time. However, it does cast up a few questions.
What Does the FIFA extension mean for the Premier League?
The Premier League can now finish when it is deemed safe to do so without any consequence from FIFA. In effect, it means that the English FA can restart the season whenever they want. It also means they will be able to fulfill their TV obligations when they so there is less of a chance of the season is either declared or null and void.
If the season were to be void, then not only would Liverpool miss out on being crowned champions for the first time in 30 years but there would be huge question marks over which sides should face the drop. On top of that, the FA were set to be forced to repay over £700m to broadcasters. Therefore, it should be viewed as a positive statement.
Transfer Window Extension Granted by FIFA
With leagues up in the air and plenty of players out on contract on June 30th there has been a lot of uncertainty about their futures. Along with their extension announcement, FIFA also confirmed that contracts due to run will end at the new close of the season. So, when it is decided when leagues will start again, contracts will conclude on the new ending date.
Similarly, the transfer window dates will be moved and come into line with the current situation.
Again, other factors do have to be considered. Countries are moving at different paces with some leagues. For example, the German Bundesliga looks ready to restart in the near future. It seems to be a case of acting sensibly around situations when and if they arise with FIFA firmly backing associations.
When will football restart?
This is still a question very much up for debate, but a decision that no longer needs to be rushed. Topflight sides in Germany have been back on the training ground while the UK remains in a serious lockdown. It is not known yet when the Bundesliga will resume, or if fans will be in attendance.
The English FA have reportedly had discussions with all sides; some oppose playing without fans while others demand the season be completed as soon as possible. The debates will no doubt carry on, but with no deadline looming here’s hoping the associations can come to sensible agreements.
Indefinite Season Extension FAQs
🥇 Q: What does FIFA’s extension mean for Liverpool?
A: It means that there is no time constraint on when the Premier League needs to completed. Therefore, it is likely that the remaining fixtures will be played at some point. As Liverpool need only a few points to win, they will likely go on to be crowned champions.
⚽ Q: Will football be played behind closed doors?
A: This is not yet known. In all likelihood, the remaining league games will be played without fans, but this is yet to be confirmed.