By Tony Attwood
On 27 April we broke the story that Cyprus could be considered as a location for running the remainder of the Premer League season, as it is still not possible to play the rest of the season in England – and probably won’t be for a while.
We’ve given a few more details as the days have passed, and the English media has refused even to recognise there is an issue (in the same way that they are refusing to discuss the major upheaval happening in relation to Fifa at the moment). But the project is out there, as we described in the article.
However, four days late, but they got there in the end, the Daily Mail has put up the story that
Premier League season could finish ABROAD says Gary Neville, who suggests moving the remaining games to Europe (but doesn’t say where…)
The subheadings (something the Daily Mail loves, along with random WORDS in capitals for no apparent reason) TELL us that
- Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher have again discussed how football can restart
- Discussion is building regarding whether a select base should be used for games
- Neville feels the prospect of finishing the Premier League abroad exists
Of course they won’t mention Untold Arsenal being there four days ago, and instead choose to say that “Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher have once again delved into the complexities of how football could restart, by exploring the option of concluding the Premier League overseas.”
But well, that’s what they do. And of course, they have to do this now, as other leagues are starting to call off their season completely. France, for example, has decided that their top divisions will not play on.
What’s more if the Premier League don’t take up the Cyrpus option, someone else will, and the chance will be gone. There’s only the opportunity for one League to play out its games on the island. And if Cyrpus is not chosen, where else? An island is the easiest area to protect and control, and there are not that many around that have the stadia that are needed – while being free of the virus.
However finally, the Mail has admitted that “the return of the Premier League is appearing more and more difficult in the midst of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with the best course of action appearing to group teams together in a select location to play out the season under lock and key.”
Jamie Carragher, at last made aware of the discussions going on, added on Sky Sprouts, ‘Using neutral venues, some sort of training camp and the safety of players and staff is the most important thing. That has to come first and foremost.
‘What if one club doesn’t vote for it but the rest of them do, does that change everything? It’ll be interesting to see how it works. Because if someone has a major problem with the season going forward whether it’s a worry for the players, neutral venues, then there’s so much to look at whether you need a unanimous vote for it to go through. That’s a big worry for the Premier League going forward. The virus will decide.”
Carragher was, as ever, struggling with issues of democratic votes and procedures established within the rule books, wondering as he does, what happened if most of the teams voted for a season to end in a neutral venue, while one team refused. Hopefully, someone can give him a bit of a rundown on how groups of people vote. Maybe someone should tell him that just because he votes Conservative at the election, that doesn’t on its own mean that they form the government.
- Why is the British media aligning itself with Fifa and ignoring alleged corruption?
- The tax man is watching and he’s not going to let clubs go…
- The home and away scandal: ignorance, or cover up?
- The reason why Liverpool and Man C are ahead of Arsenal.
- How which referee a club gets has a major impact on the result of each game
- The statistical evidence that shows PGMO are biased against Arsenal
- How European football has taken up the fight against clubs breaking FFP