Project Reboot: New Timescale to End Season, Clubs’ ‘Persuasion’ Campaign to End, Major TV Plans

The Premier League is reportedly set to ‘restart the project’ this week, and is said to have offered players a plan to finish the season by August 22.

The UK is still in lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, and although restrictions in England have been partially lifted (and not quite clearly), when – or if – it is safe to resume football. His headache is noticeable.

So far, there has been little in the way of a clear timeline, and while June 12 was floated as a possible return date, the plans were delayed on Monday with the headline ‘Delayed Project’ with the naughty L’ ran the Equipe. Retard’, of course, means ‘late’ in French.

Yesterday’s L’Équipe somewhat unfortunately chose to describe the Premier League’s efforts to return to action as a “retarded project” – presumably a play on words because “retarded” Means “late” and restarting the project seems behind schedule.

— Get French Football News (@GFFN) May 17, 2020

However, reports in the UK have reacted, and set a new timeline for the league’s resumption. The Mail, firstly, is claiming that the remainder of the season will now take place between June 19 and August 22 – a week later than initially penciled in.

He says the plans were presented to players in a Zoom call last weekend, and the general consensus was that the season would resume at some point. While there is significant opposition from Watford boss Nigel Pearson and many others – it is not believed that the resistance is enough to derail the updated plans.

The report has been taken a step further by The Telegraph, which says the club will go ahead with a new two-phase project on Monday. They note the same two-month timescale to squeeze in the remaining nine full rounds of fixtures, and say players could return to training on Tuesday, with social distancing measures in place, after testing at the weekend.

Premier League clubs will move to restart the project with a five-week plan to resume on June 19.

⚽The players are expected to return to training on Tuesday.
A decision on neutral sites is possible later this week

— Telegraph Football (@TeleFootball) May 17, 2020

The first phase will last 14 days, before moving into the second phase, in which players will return to full contact training for three weeks. If that 35-day plan can be completed without any unforeseen complications, then June 19 is believed to be a go for the Premier League to return to TV screens.

There is a notable desire to speed up plans now that the Bundesliga has restarted, and after Monday’s vote, there could be another as soon as Friday on the use of neutral venues – although about all 20 top-flight clubs They are said to be against it.

Interestingly, those reports come in line with new demands from lead broadcasters Sky and BT, who are said to be seeking unprecedented access to compensate for low-quality products.

“It would be a surprise if we didn’t see some positive tests” @skysports_bryan looks at what could happen from today’s Premier League meeting, and how testing has started at PL clubs.

— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) May 18, 2020

With empty stadiums potentially less attractive to spectators, broadcasters are believed to want the right to show live footage from the dressing room, audio from the technical area, and half-time interviews with players and coaches.

The clubs are believed to be keen to keep both broadcasters sweet, but three months without a product could still result in a partial £300m waiver.

Both reports reiterate the government’s desire for the league to make some matches free-to-view without Sky or BT subscriptions.

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