Mar 30, 2020 - Sports

Liverpool's Premier League title could be in coronavirus jeopardy

Data: Premier League; Note: Manchester City facing two-year Champions League ban; Table: Axios Visuals
Data: Premier League; Note: Manchester City facing two-year Champions League ban; Table: Axios Visuals

When the Premier League season was suspended, Liverpool had a 25-point lead atop the standings and was two wins away from securing the league title, which would have been the club's first in 30 years.

Driving the news: Multiple Premier League clubs want to end the current campaign immediately and replay it in full once it's deemed safe, which would deny Liverpool the league trophy it so clearly deserves, The Athletic's David Ornstein reports.

  • Worth noting: Ornstein cites anonymous sources, so this report should be taken with a grain of salt considering the self-interest involved (there's a reason why Liverpool and Leicester City officials and fans want to play out the season while those from Arsenal and Everton don't).

The state of play: A voided season would present the Premier League — and all soccer leagues that participate in international competitions and use promotion/relegation systems — with some unique challenges.

  • Champions League: If the season is voided, and therefore never actually happened, who would get the four Champions League spots? The top four from the 2018-19 season?
  • Promotion/Relegation: Norwich City was headed for relegation to the EFL Championship (one tier below), while Leeds United was headed for promotion to the Premier League. If the season is voided, both clubs would presumably stay put, fundamentally altering their futures (the financial gap between the two leagues is massive).
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