Coronavirus: June 1 earliest possible return for professional sport in England

Mon 11 May 2020 | 14:45

Professional sports in England could theoretically return behind closed doors by June 1, though strict government criteria must be met.

The UK government has announced that professional sport will not be staged in England until June 1 at the earliest.

Prime minister Boris Johnson on Sunday announced a "roadmap" outlining how lockdown restrictions may be eased, but there was no mention of a potential return of professional sport.

The government released a lengthy document on Monday, which outlined that action may resume from the start of next month as part of step two of lifting restrictions.

It states that one of the changes from June 1 could be "permitting cultural and sporting events to take place behind closed-doors for broadcast, while avoiding the risk of large-scale social contact."

The government also stated reopening venues such as sports stadia that attract large crowds "may only be fully possible significantly later depending on the reduction in numbers of infections", so it could be a long time before spectators are allowed in.

Premier League clubs were meeting on Monday to continue talks over 'Project Restart', with the season having been suspended since March 13 due to the COVID-19 crisis.

This has been billed as a crucial week for English football, with doubts lingering over whether top-flight and Football League action can resume.

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) last month announced there will be no professional cricket played in the UK until July 1, with The Hundred put back until next year.

July is the target for a resumption of the Premiership rugby union season, but no dates have been confirmed.

Further developments were that those not on a shortlist of exemptions must self-isolate in their accommodation for 14 days on arrival into the UK.

source: SportMob