Premier League decision-makers are reportedly in talks to finish this season by playing fixtures behind closed doors, with all 92 remaining matches to be televised across June and July.
The season was initially suspended on March 13 due to the coronavirus pandemic, and the earliest possible return date has since been pushed back to April 30.
Miguel Delaney of the Independent wrote the ‘World Cup-style’ schedule could see teams based in isolated camps separated from one another and their families, complete with “full testing and quarantine conditions.” Squads would be stationed at hotels while several matches are played each day over the course of the summer.
According to the report, training pitches could be used in place of usual stadia. These appear most likely to be based in the midlands, although sites in London are also understood to be part of discussions.
Organisers are under increasing pressure to find a method of completing the campaign as the financial repercussions of cancelling it altogether become more apparent.
Alex Miller of the Mail On Sunday reported the cost of calling the season null and void would be around eight times more expensive to the league than playing without fans in attendance:
The concept of playing games out in a quarantined World Cup theme is one that “clubs have kept coming back to,” but there’s a list of logistical obstacles to overcome before that can advance.
It’s also contingent on the COVID-19 threat easing in the United Kingdom before the restructuring can move ahead. Delaney added “even one case could derail the whole plan.”
Liverpool opened a 25-point gap at the top of the table with nine games left before play was suspended. Defending champions Manchester City—the only team who can mathematically topple the Reds—sit second but have played one game fewer than Jurgen Klopp’s leaders.
The broadcasting ‘mega event’ is being considered as a way to kickstart the British economy in light of the coronavirus outbreak, with all major sports sidelined for the foreseeable future.