If it were up to FIFA medical committee chairman Michel D’Hooghe, there would be no soccer games until at least Sept. 1.
“Football remains always a contact sport and one of the first things that everybody says is that you should avoid contact for the moment,” D’Hooghe said during an interview with Sky Sports (h/t Adriana Garcia of ESPN). “So football can only be possible if contacts can be possible again.”
He also called the worldwide coronavirus pandemic the “most dramatic situation we have lived in since the Second World War.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has uprooted the entire sports world, and there are various plans in place regarding potential returns depending on the country and leagues themselves.
Garcia provided a rundown, noting France, the Netherlands, Belgium and Argentina will not allow sporting events, even behind closed doors, until at least September. That means the 2019-20 French football season, including those of Ligue 1 and Ligue 2, is effectively over.
Elsewhere, the English Premier League would like to resume in June and Germany’s Bundesliga teams have resumed training. UEFA wants European domestic leagues to submit plans to return and finish their seasons by May 25 at the latest.
In Spain, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said teams in La Liga can start individual training May 4, while Italy’s Serie A clubs voted unanimously to finish their season. However, neither country’s health authorities have approved the plans yet.
As for the MLS in North America, the 2020 season is suspended through at least June 8 with no firm plan in place yet for a return.
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