FIFA is prepared for challenges over players contract extensions while league seasons across the globe are suspended due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The global body proposed a set of guidelines meant to address the complexities created due to the shutdown and to also preserve the integrity and stability of the domestic leagues.
Meanwhile, there are many major European leagues who hope to resume games at some point later this year. The games will most probably be without fans and there are hints that the season may be postponed to as late as August.
"You can appreciate the complexity of trying to give some guidelines globally," Victor Montagliani, the FIFA vice president who leads the body's coronavirus task force, told the Associated Press. “We fully understand there could be individual circumstances in various legal jurisdictions that may arise to questions being asked or even some challenges.”
PCB Capital Partners Set for Newcastle Takeover
Newcastle United takeover (FB page)
Sky Sports reported that PCB Capital Partners has agreed a deal to buy Newcastle United and put Mike Ashley’s controversial 13-year tenure as the owner to an end.
Also Read | Lionesses Donate to #PlayersTogether Fund for NHS
This follows significant Companies House legal documentation that emerged on April 14, proving the legal framework for a deal was being put in place by the two parties.
Supplementary documentation led to claims Ashley is lending PCP money to help complete the deal. It has always been the case Ashley was willing to structure payments in a bid to initiate the sale. However, the price agreed by Ashley is closer to £300m instead of the original asking price which was around £340m. If the Premier League ratifies the deal, the prospective buyers are understood to have earmarked significant investment into the club.
The Saudi fund (PIF) directed by Prime Mohammed Bin Salman will hold 80 percent shares of the club while Amanda Staveley will hold around 10 percent and the final 10 percent will be controlled by billionaire brothers, David and Simon Reuben who have significant property interests in the Newcastle area -- including owning the city's racecourse.
Rangers Boss Gerrard Slams SPFL
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard (Pic: Goal.com)
The Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) announced an end to the League One and League Two seasons after a controversial resolution was passed by majority of votes crowning Celtic as champions.
Forty two Scottish professional clubs voted on a digital platform over the SPFL’s recommendation to end the season across the lower tier and top-tier (Scottish Championship League one and League 2) Premiership when it became clear that seasons cannot be completed.
Rangers boss Steven Gerrard criticised the handling of the votes to end the Scottish season in the lower leagues and called for an investigation. “From afar, the SPFL looks an absolute mess,” Gerrard said on Sky Sport. “I’m watching ex-players, pundits and it’s [the federation] getting absolutely battered from pillar to post for the way it’s handled things, certainly in the last couple of days.
“There are so many accusations and doubts and questions about this institution, he (SPFL chairman Murdoch MacLennan) needs to allow an independent investigation… to prove everyone wrong and make sure there is fairness and transparency across the board in Scotland,” Gerrard added.
Premier League Season Ending
Premier League clubs are going to come together to discuss the ending of the season in a meeting on April 17. The clubs are going to meet to find a way to end the season through the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. The proposal of the floor is to crown the 2019-20 champions by June 30. It is yet to be decided if all the remaining matches of the League are going to be played.
According to some reports, one of the major reasons the season is being called to an end before July -- and is favoured by a lot of league members -- is because numerous players and staff contracts are going to end by June.
If the said proposal is going to come to a conclusion by vote, then the Premier League is going to require a minimum of a 14-club majority to approve any decision.
Belarus Postpones Women's Football
The new season of women’s football in Belarus is being postponed because of fears that players have been exposed to coronavirus, but the men's league is continuing without interruptions. The women’s league was due to start on Thursday, but on Wednesday the Belarus soccer federation said the season is “suspended until further notice.”
The federation also added that "several” players were in contact with “possible carriers” of coronavirus.
Amid the lockdown and sporting world coming to a halt, Belarus is the only country in Europe which is still continuing to play football. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko opposed strict lockdown measures and was also seen playing a game of ice hockey last month.
“There is no basis to close down the championship,” Sports and Tourism minister Sergei Kovalchuk said. “Nowadays, the number of fans has shrunk by more than 70 percent. "No one is forcing anyone to go to the stadium. You can go, or not go.”
Read more sports stories from Newsclick