The Premier League have circulated a proposed timetable to clubs for a return to action which would see them back in full training on May 27, with the league program resuming three weeks after that on June 8.
The Daily Telegraph understands that the plans will be discussed individually with clubs today ahead of the shareholders conference on Friday with a timetable that is subject to government approval.
It works on the basis that the next government announcement on lockdown a week today, May 7, eases the measures currently in place. From then, the proposed plan is to test players for Covid – 19 over the following weekend, May 9 – , with a view to training in small groups the following Monday (May 18).
Some clubs, including Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal , have already had players back working individually at their training grounds and the next step would be for them to train in small groups while observing the distancing protocols. They would then step up to full training the next Monday – May 19 – which would give clubs three weeks to prepare their players for the return to competitive games.
The “Project Restart” plan has been drawn up alongside new protocols for training grounds that were disclosed today by the Daily Mirror . They include cleaning of all training ground equipment including GPS units to track players’ fitness, goals and corner flags. There will be mandatory PPE for staff at training grounds and players will wear masks or protective face gear at all times.
The restart plan has been devised by the Premier League head of elite performance Andy O’Boyle, formerly a first team coach at Liverpool and Wrexham and also previously the head of sports science at Coventry City. O’Boyle and the Premier League technical director Richard Garlick have been responsible for presenting to the clubs a feasible way of managing a return to playing over the coronavirus crisis that has placed such financial strain upon the game.
The timetable is still subject to government approval although the football authorities believe that they have the support of the government in principle to overcome the obstacles to get games up and running behind closed doors for the benefit of broadcasters and fans.
Read More Full coverage and live updates on the Coronavirus (Covid – 19)
GIPHY App Key not set. Please check settings