- The Premier League will met on Friday to look at a number of proposals to complete the current league season
- One club CEO says the China plan is a non-starter
English Premier League clubs are to discuss the potential of an unprecedented switch to China to conclude the increasingly imperilled campaign, according to reports in the UK.
The 20 EPL owners are scheduled to meet via video link on Friday to thrash out plans to finish the season with the worsening coronavirus pandemic making it impossible for the league to consider a proper resumption in England.
The Premier League has been provisionally suspended until April 30, but it is highly likely that date will be extended indefinitely.
Liverpool currently sit 25 points clear at the top of the League table and need just two more wins to secure a first domestic league title in 30 years.
The China move is just one of a number of ideas that have been floated in recent weeks with Premier League officials becoming increasingly concerned about the potential financial ramifications of not fulfilling contractual obligations to broadcasters and sponsors were the campaign to be cancelled.
There would also be catastrophic knock-on effects for the financial well-being of many clubs lower down the league in the UK were the regular promotion and relegation processes to be suspended this season.
Let Liverpool become Premier League champions in China while coronavirus chaos grips England
However, a report on The Athletic quoted one Premier League chief as saying the China transplant plan was a non-starter.
"The country that keeps getting proposed is China. It just doesn't make any sense. It is a crazy idea and I think it will get firmly rejected. If we were to pick up the Premier League and move it to another part of world right now we'd get absolutely slaughtered. Somebody accused us the other day of being in a bubble. I feel a little bit like they are right at the moment " even though I am not, I can see why people think we are."
The proposal reportedly examined potential host countries where the "infection curve" was flattening, indicating some element of control over the outbreak. China had been seen to have overcome the worst of its infections before a recent spike in cases led to more restrictions on travel into the country.
It is understood the vast majority of the 20 club owners wish to see the current season played to a natural conclusion, but with the spread of covid-19 showing no signs of abating, the chances of that occurring in the UK are slimming by the day.
Other ideas to complete the season have included a World Cup-style "festival of football" in which the season would be concluded in a short time-frame in a single region of the UK, and an accelerated programme of matches being played behind closed doors on a Saturday-Wednesday-Saturday basis.
Copyright (c) 2020. South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.