KNVB reveals tentative plan to finish Dutch football season
Dutch professional football will attempt to complete the current season before August 3, a deadline set today by European football federation UEFA. The Dutch football association, KNVB, said that concluding the season within the timeframe will only be possible if it can restart play by about the end of June.
Teams would need to take some action before restarting play, meaning that matches would be unlikely to begin before mid-June at the earliest. “What we understand is that before the season gets restarted the clubs would need a period of training. We would have to see when and where the players would be able to do that safely," the KNVB said.
However, if the ongoing global health crisis makes it impossible to start by June 30, the remainder of the season would likely be cancelled. It would not provide enough time to meet the UEFA deadline, the KNVB said.
No decision to hold football matches will be made without first getting permission from the Dutch government and public health agency RIVM.
Professional and amateur football in the Netherlands has been suspended since March 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Pro matches will not be allowed to take place before June 1 due to the existing physical distancing measures in place to slow the spread of the virus. The amateur season was ended prematurely on Tuesday.
The top level of Dutch football, Eredivisie, still has nine match days remaining, for a combined total of 162 games left to play.
The updated plan from the KNVB was announced after UEFA held a video call with representatives of all the leagues in Europe. The call resulted in UEFA shifting their deadline that national leagues conclude the 2019/20 season by August 3 instead of June 30 which it had previously demanded.