La Liga targets return June 12
Barcelona are looking down at Real Madrid in the table, but only by two points. Juanjo Martin/Shutterstock.

La Liga president Javier Tebas is eager to see Spain’s top flight resume on its planned date of June 12 despite the recent spike of staff testing positive for the coronavirus.

Five players in La Liga and the Segunda Division were diagnosed with COVID-19 along with three non-playing staff, a number that’s thought to include Atletico Madrid left-back Renan Lodi.

Tebas, 57, spoke to Movistar shortly after the positive tests were announced and was hopeful of a swift comeback while acknowledging the decision was out of his hands:

“I would like it (the season resuming) to be June 12, but it will depend on the numbers. In the end it will be up to the health authorities. They explain what can be done. We do not rush, we are not the ones who decide the phases.”

Real Madrid and Spain captain Sergio Ramos has also been enthusiastic in his support regarding a return to action, via Goal:

Los Blancos are currently second in the table and two points behind Barcelona with 11 games to play.

Those players who have tested positive for the coronavirus will be required to quarantine and return two successive negative tests before they can resume training with their teams.

Despite the positive tests, Tebas continued to say the results were considerably fewer than expected:

“It is less than we expected. We expected 25 or 30, according to the numbers seen in the Bundesliga and the potency of the virus in Spain.
“Out of 2,500 individuals only eight positives. And the players already are in the final phase of the disease and this week they will be tested again.”

La Liga’s president has said plans to cancel the 2019-20 campaign are “not an option,” as clubs would stand to lose somewhere in the region of €1 billion from sponsorship and broadcasting revenue.

It’s expected games will return behind closed doors and with specific safety protocols in place to limit the spread of COVID-19.

The Bundesliga is set to come back on Saturday after Germany eased its measures against the coronavirus lockdown, which will make it the first of Europe’s major leagues to get back underway. The English Premier League was given the green light by the UK government to return after June 1.