Football

Premier League, FA and EFL confident of finishing season after enhancing Covid-19 protocols

The organisations called on players to “set the right example” to supporters by following the latest restrictions

The Football Association (FA) and Premier League are confident that the 2020-21 season will be completed and urged clubs and players to fully comply with restrictions.

The two bodies, plus the English Football League (EFL) and Barclays Women’s Super League have increased measures to combat the spread of Covid-19.

Several matches have been postponed in the Premier League recently. An outbreak of Covid-19 cases forced Aston Villa‘s clashes against Tottenham and Everton, which was originally scheduled to go ahead on Sunday, to be called off. The game between Burnley and Fulham earlier this month was also postponed, while the Toffees saw their match against Manchester City rescheduled in December. 

Despite the disruption, the chief executives of the FA, Premier League and EFL do not expect the season to be curtailed and called for players to “set the right example to the public” by following Covid-19 protocol.

“The Football Association, Premier League, EFL and Barclays Women’s Super League have this week introduced enhanced Covid-19 measures and stressed their importance to everyone in the game,” the statement read.

“Safety is a collective effort and football requires the ongoing support of clubs, managers, players and all those involved in staging matches to continue to manage the spread of infection and set the right example to the public on and off the pitch.

“We will offer guidance, education and support as well as reviewing our practices to ensure they remain of the highest standard.

“Our three organisations have confidence in our Covid-19 protocols and our ability to bring the season to a successful conclusion.

“Throughout this crisis, the health, safety and wellbeing of all participants have been our No. 1 priority and, by following the national rules and football’s own strict medical and scientific advice, football has been able to maintain its privileged position and continue to engage and entertain millions of people around the country.

“The game has a responsibility, and during this critical period it is down to everyone involved to ensure they follow Government rules and our protocols.  

“We have seen the huge contribution players have made to the national effort and they must continue to use their influence in demonstrating the importance of following the rules.

“With full compliance to our Covid-19 protocols – alongside effective testing regimes – we are confident at the halfway point of the season that, with the support of all, the 2020-21 campaign will continue to its conclusion in May.”

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