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By Olisa Chukwuma
English Premier League clubs will resume training tomorrow Tuesday 19 May 2020, but in small groups.
This comes after a meeting was held earlier today and a statement released by the Premier League revealed that shareholders “voted unanimously” for training to begin from tomorrow afternoon, and in what would form the “first step towards restarting the premier league, when safe to do.”
According to the Premier League, players are to observe social distancing measures and contact training is not yet allowed under the “Return to Training Protocol.”
The statement also added: “this stage has been agreed in consultation with players, managers, club doctors, independent experts and the government.”
“Strict medical protocols of the highest standard will ensure everyone return to training in the safest environment possible”
The Premier League also said that the “health and wellbeing of all participants” is of prime importance and “the safe return to training is a step-by-step process.”
“Full consultation will now continue with players, managers, clubs, the PFA and LMA as protocols for full-contact training are developed.”
Since March 2020, Premier League football, like most of other top European leagues were suspended due the Covid-19 pandemic with about 9 rounds of matches left to play, and Liverpool leading with 25 points clear at the top of the table.
June 12 was previously targeted as a possible date for a restart of the league, and the UK government had given the prospect of June 1st for a return of professional sports.
But the Scottish Premiership today after a board meeting announced Celtic as Champions for the 9th seasons in row, following Friday’s decision involving all 12 teams that completing the season would be impossible.
However, Football in Germany returned during the weekend for the first time in almost two months, albeit behind closed doors with wins for leaders Bayern Munich who recorded a 2-0 win at Union Berlin.
Second-placed Borussia Dortmund also defeated derby rivals Schalke 4-0 at an empty Signal Iduna Park Stadium, with their teenage Norwegian striker, Erling Braut Haaland scoring the first Bundesliga goal of the Covid-19 implemented league restart.
But following strict protocols, all the matches played in Germany – eight so far, were marked with silence in and around stadium grounds, mask-wearing by substitutes and coaching staff, with social distancing measures applied not only on the bench and in the stands, but with goal celebrations too, which just might be the new normal for football in the era of a pandemic.
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