Good Morning, It's Monday 18th May, and here are the latest headlines from Elland Road...
EFL Statement delights Leeds fans
The EFL released a statement on Friday, the EFL said it will use an unweighted points per game model to calculate final standings for any division which cannot complete the season. The statement read...
In the event of a curtailment of the season, the EFL board outlined how this could be addressed through a framework that includes maintaining the principle of promotion and relegation, league tables to be determined via unweighted points per game (PPG) and play-offs to remain in every division to determine the final promotion place.
Leeds would finish Champions with an average of 1.92 points per game with West Brom just behind them on 1.89. The play offs contenders would be Fulham (1.73), Brentford (1.62), Nottingham Forest (1.62) and Preston North End (1.51) points. The EFL Statement was released following all 24 clubs from League Two voting unanimously for the season to end, three clubs to be promoted automatically, play-offs to take place normally but no relegation into the National League.
Stevenage sit at the foot of the Football league with 22 points, but with a game in hand over Macclesfield on 25 points. FA Chairman Greg Clarke told the Premier League last week that they would block any moves to declare seasons null and void. Whilst its sad news for Graham Westley's side, the FA will surely need to follow through on their promise throughout all 91 League Clubs. Stevenage could of course use the excuse that as Bury were expelled from the Football League, they should be allowed to stay to balance the numbers, but would this give Premier League teams at the foot of the Premier League ammunition?
Championship teams set to vote
Championship and League One Clubs are set to vote this week on whether to resume the 2019/20 season. Due to the massive additional costs of testing players, it’s likely that only the Championship will restart. This will see Coventry and Rotherham return to the second tier with Oxford Utd, Portsmouth, Fleetwood Town and Peterborough contest the play offs. This will be harsh on Sunderland and Wycombe Wanderers who miss out on the plays on goal difference.
There is a suggestion that parachute payments to relegated clubs could be extended to those going down into League One, League Two and the National League to soften the blow of going down. Training must resume in the next seven days if there is any chance that FA Chairman Greg Clarke's guidelines that the season must be conclude by 30th June are met. This date coincides with out of contract players being released from their contractual obligations.
Is it too soon?
Yesterday we witnessed first hand what would happen if football is bought back too soon. Two unidentified players from the Hannover v Dresden fixture tested positive to the coronavirus. Although the duo didn't have any symptoms, the entire team including coaching and support staff face quarantine for 14 days. How could this affect the he Premiership / Championship? Wayne Rooney certainly thinks it is! The Derby County and former Manchester United forward told the Sunday Times...
I'm desperate to train and play again, but it feels like football in England is being pushed to return too soon. Our government says people can return to work, but only with social distancing in the workplace and that does not work in football. So I don't get it, until the government gives the green light to have physical contact, we can't train or prepare properly.
I understand where Troy Deeney, Danny Rose and Raheem Sterling are coming from. The concern is not so much for ourselves, like whether you might pick up an injury, but more about bringing coronavirus home and infecting those around us. People's lives are at risk.