The Premier League has reportedly been given a huge boost in their bid to resume the campaign after the Government approved their framework for a return.
Top flight officials have been establishing a plan of action that would see games get back underway again behind closed doors, with a possible return date of June 13, in a bid to see off any legal complications posed by an abrupt end to the season.
Clubs are also under pressure to play again from broadcasters and sponsors, and now the league has seen their initial plans given the green light, according to the Mirror. They are now being encouraged to move to the next step of preparing concrete proposals, the report adds.
The Premier League is seeking to complete the rest of the season in June behind closed doors
The office of Prime Minister Boris Johnson has provided ‘real encouragement’ that the planned timeframe of June could be possible, according to reports
The framework is said to include the vital testing of players against the coronavirus – which has halted sport around the globe and has sidelined Premier League games since the beginning of March.
Since then, players have been forced to train at home during lockdown, with clubs having to monitor their progression remotely. But now a number of clubs are starting to head back to the training field ahead of the season’s possible return.
The Premier League has been in talks with Government figures for some weeks as talks about the return of football continue, with culture secretary Oliver Dowden admitting he was keen to get matches ‘up and running as soon as possible.
Some clubs are back intraining, with Tottenham heading back to Hotspur Way on Tuesday
Culture secretary Oliver Dowden confirmed he has held talks to get football back underway
And the Mirror says the office of Prime Minister Boris Johnson has provided ‘real encouragement’ that the planned timeframe of June could be possible.
The framework reportedly approved by the Government is said to include a comprehensive testing programme that will be fully funded by the league, co-operation from police and medical services to provide assistance at stadiums, full contact squad training at the end of May and games to resume in the second week of June.
However, Premier League officials have been warned that their go-ahead to resume their footballing calendar will only stand as long as coronavirus cases continue to drop and the fatality rate begins to improve.
Arsenal have been pictured training in isolation after their first day back in training this week
The Premier League are planning a comprehensive testing plan for all players against the virus
The UK has just had its period of lockdown extended by three weeks but is starting to see a slowing of infections following the measures.
On Tuesday Ligue 1 and 2 was cancelled as the French government decreed that no sport could be played until September – joining Belgium and Holland in scrapping their leagues due to the deadly disease.
There are fears that Italy could follow suit in voiding their campaign, but Germany looks the closest to completing their Bundesliga season after the country began to relax lockdown protocols.