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FIFA set to extend 2019/20 campaign ‘indefinitely’

FIFA are set to announce plans to extend the current season ‘indefinitely’ amid the coronavirus crisis, allowing each domestic competition to determine when the 2019/20 season finishes.

The majority of football across the planet is currently suspended amid the global pandemic, with the remainder of the season remaining uncertain at present as the world attempts to deal with the spread of Covid-19.

A number of scenarios have been discussed by governing bodies including concluding the campaign during the summer months and even the possibility of the 2019/20 season being declared null and void, though that latter situation now seems increasingly unlikely given FIFA’s planned proposals.

According to The Athletic, FIFA are likely to reveal plans for an indefinite extension in the next 48 hours, affording ‘maximum flexibility’ to domestic competitions with the acceptance the spread of the disease is at a different stage in each country.

The governing body will also alter dates to the football calendar including the summer transfer window, permitting contract extensions for players whose deals are set to expire this summer.

Several leading Premier League players – including the likes of Chelsea‘s Willian and Liverpool‘s Adam Lallana – are due to see their contracts expire on June 30, a date which could come before the end of the current season.

Premier League clubs met on Friday to discuss plans but the reports says a timeframe in concluding the season was not discussed, with an acceptance that any proposals can not be made in confidence until the country passes the curve of the outbreak.

The desire to finish the current season is also increased over fears over broadcast revenue, with the possibility the 20 top flight sides would need to repay £762m to broadcasters should the remainder of the campaign be unfulfilled.

The determination to finishing the season has led to several radical ideas, including the possibility of playing behind-closed-doors fixtures at neutral venues in country’s declared ‘safe’, though Premier League clubs remain split on a resumption of football without fans.

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See also – Remembering the five top goalscorers from the 95/96 Premier League season

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