Premier League clubs given the go-ahead to play friendly matches
The Premier League 2019-20 season is set to resume from June 17 and clubs have been given the go-ahead to take part in friendly matches ahead of the planned resumption. As per reports, venues must be no more than 90 minutes away and players must travel in their own cars to and from fixtures while wearing the kit. Here's more.
According to a report in Sky Sports, PGMOL referees and assistants are yet to be tested for the coronavirus so, for now, club coaching staff will referee matches. One expects the country's top referees to be available to officiate in the week before the planned return to match action on June 17.
If the friendly matches are held at a stadium, players will enter via the players' entrance and walk straight onto the pitch, before warming up. Meanwhile, the dressing rooms will not be used. Earlier, Premier League clubs were cleared to resume contract training last week, paving the way for competitive action to resume later this month.
Last week, Premier League conducted the fourth round of COVID-19 testing for clubs. 1,130 people were tested in total and there were zero positive cases. A statement read: "The EPL can today confirm that on Thursday May 28 and Friday May 29, 1,130 players and club staff were tested for COVID-19. Of these, zero have tested positive." The tests increased from 50 to 60.
It is important to highlight there have been 3,870 negative results in the first four rounds. The mass rounds of testing is so vital going forward. Moreover, this has also brought a sense of relief with the Premier League eyeing to resume the 2019-20 season next month. Earlier, the approval of contact training serves an another major boost for Project Restart.
The EPL is provisionally due to restart on June 17 with two games in hand. Man City vs Arsenal and Aston Villa vs Sheffield United are the matches to be played, before a full round of fixtures the following weekend.