Premier League clubs received a boost to their hopes of completing the season on Monday as the government published a “roadmap” that could see the return of elite sport in England from June 1.
As the 20 English top-flight clubs met for further talks on “Project Restart”, ministers announced plans to ease the coronavirus lockdown.
Under step two of that process, which cannot begin any earlier than June 1, sporting events would be allowed “to take place behind closed doors for broadcast, while avoiding the risk of large-scale social contact”.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he believed the return of sport on TV would “provide a much-needed boost to national morale.”
Supporters face a long wait to be allowed to attend matches, though, with the latest guidelines recognising a return to the sport in front of a crowd “may only be fully possible significantly later depending on the reduction in numbers of infections”.
Premier League clubs had been planning for a return to action no earlier than the week beginning June 8.