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Coronavirus: Most European league will finish says Uefa president

PUBLISHED: 16:30 17 May 2020

UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin

UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin

PA Wire/PA Images

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin believes most European leagues will be able to finish the season.

The German Bundesliga is the first major league to resume following the coronavirus pandemic while plans are afoot for June resumptions in Spain, Italy and England.

France and Holland are the two major leagues who have opted to cancel their seasons.

UEFA has a plan in place, wanting to end the 2019/20 campaign with the Champions League final at the end of August, and Ceferin thinks that will be possible.

“We have a concrete plan of finishing the European season,” he told beIN Sports. “Of course, this summer we will have to play without spectators at the stadiums.

“I think the majority of leagues will finish the season. The ones who will not, it’s their decision. But they will still have to play qualifiers if they want to participate in the European UEFA competition.

“I can say that the European season will be finished, if everything is as it is now, in August. As things look now, I’m sure... that we can finish the European season and this means UEFA competition.

“The national leagues are a separate thing and they will decide separately how they want to proceed. But I think at least 80 per cent will finish the season.”

Ceferin hailed the German league and Government for their organisation of the Bundesliga’s resumption.

Play in Germany started on Saturday behind closed doors and appears to have been a success.

“We trust Germans, their authorities are very serious... It’s not only about football,” Ceferin said. “It’s about people being depressed because we are locked down, because there is so much uncertainty, and football brings life to a usual level.

“Football brings positive energy. It’s easier to be home if you can watch sports!

“So I think it’s a great example of cooperation between the German league and the German government. I hope, and think, they will be very successful.”

LaLiga will step up its preparations for a return to action, with group training of up to 10 players allowed from Monday.

Spain’s top two leagues are hoping to resume on June 12 and this marks a significant moment of progression.

Barcelona said in a statement: “From Monday 18 May the clubs in La Liga will enter into phase three of training. In this phase training sessions of up to 10 players is allowed as the club have been informed by La Liga.

“The first team players will return to training at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper on Monday at 9.30am CEST with the option of training in groups.

“The players during the first week of training have worked out individually in sessions of endurance and precision.”


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