Premier League set for June 17 return

The coveted English Premier League trophy. (Photo: Premier League.com)

Nearly all 20 clubs in the English Premier League (EPL) have come to unanimous decision to green light the resumption of the 2019-2020 season of top-flight football come Wednesday, June 17.

It’s the first major news to emerge from Thursday’s (May 28) multi-stakeholder videoconference and would see the first match between Arsenal and defending champions Manchester City. Aston Villa will also square off against Sheffield United.

While the official date proposed and agreed upon is Saturday, June 20, the competition has to complete those two matches beforehand. What’s more another possible fixture – potentially Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester United – may be played on Friday, June 19.

The current season would conclude in early August.

The videoconference, which is still ongoing, is expected to last eight hours, with issues like broadcast rebates and home and away grounds still to be discussed.

The Premier League, suspended indefinitely since March amid the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, has seen an acceleration in plans to restart the season.

Just 24 hours prior (May 27), clubs universally settled to return to contact training having made a vast majority of players comfortable with health and safety protocols to be implemented.

“The league’s testing procedure continues with the latest round returning just four positive results from 1,008 players and staff members tested,” the Independent reported.

As it stands, Liverpool are 25 points clear atop the EPL points table, followed by Manchester City, Leicester City, Chelsea and Manchester United rounding out the top five teams.