Premier League teams are concerned that the league may be postponed since the UK is facing “another shutdown” owing to an increase in COVID-19’s Omicron variant cases.
Manchester United has become the latest club to be infected with the virus, after Norwich City, Arsenal, Leicester City, and Aston Villa among the clubs hit by the version. United’s match against Brentford on Tuesday night has already been postponed because of a COVID-19 outbreak at Carrington. In the same way, Brighton’s match versus Tottenham was called off.
Players tested Positive
On Monday, the Premier League revealed that 42 players and staff had tested positive for the virus, setting a new high for a single week. The ‘slow speed’ of their immunization campaigns has ‘exacerbated’ Premier League clubs’ anxieties.
Wolves are the only club from England’s top-flight domestic league to have met Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s aim of increasing the number of over-18s, according to the research. A ‘significant proportion’ of second dosages were not given to athletes until October, according to the publication.
The postponing of the Premier League results in a fresh set of issues for broadcasters and fixture congestion in the second half of the season. As a result, to maximize their earnings, broadcasters come up with a new set of criteria.
Furthermore, with the FIFA World Cup taking place in Qatar in November of next year, a postponement of the league will only hurt players in the long term. The Premier League will very certainly not be scrapped in its entirety, but there will undoubtedly be harsher rules and re-scheduled games to compensate for the days missed.
Rules on Cancellation
According to the Premier League’s handbook, they can “only authorize the rescheduling or postponing of a league match in extreme circumstances.” They add that they will make judgments for each club on an individual basis and that there are no fixed rules for determining whether or not a match will be canceled.
Following the cancellation of Brentford’s match against Manchester United, the Premier League announced new “emergency measures” to combat the spread of Covid-19, including requiring players and staff to complete a lateral flow test every day to visit training facilities.
Players and staff must now take a PCR test at least twice a week, in addition to the daily testing required to gain access to training areas. Additional measures, such as mask-wearing and social isolation, are expected to be enforced in the future.