UEFA is reportedly determined that the current season will be concluded 'sportingly' on the field. According to British media, UEFA, the European Club Association [ECA] and European Leagues [EL] have written to 55 member associations, urging them not to abandon their seasons as the officials are planning to resume in season around July.
All UEFA competitions and matches (including friendlies) for clubs and national teams for both men and women have been put on hold until further notice.— UEFA (@UEFA) March 17, 2020
UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin, ECA chairman Andrea Agnelli and EL president Lars-Christer Olsson, all signed the letter which noted that the member nations should work in tandem to tackle the coronavirus pandemic. As quoted by a leading publication, the letter read, 'It is of paramount importance that even a disruptive event like this epidemic does not prevent our competitions from being decided on the field, in accordance with their rules and that all sporting titles are awarded on the basis of results. As responsible leaders in our sport, this is what we must ensure, until the last possibility exists and whilst planning, operational and regulatory solutions are available.'
The news of UEFA's letter broke just after Belgian Football Association announced that the Pro League will be cancelled as Europe continues to struggle to deal with coronavirus outbreak. Club Brugge, who are currently the top side in Pro League, will reportedly be crowned champions. It is believed that clubs in the Netherlands are also contemplating if their season should be abandoned.
However, in the above-mentioned letter, UEFA stated that any decision of abandoning domestic competitions is premature and cannot be justified. It further stated that the European organisation holds the right to assess the entitlement of clubs to be admitted to the 2020-21 UEFA club competitions - Champions League and Europa League. This could imply that Brugge could potentially miss out on a Champions League berth if Belgian's football league remains cancelled. Belgian clubs could also be denied from participating in the Europa League.
The letter added that officials have held several meetings and are in constant contact with each other to formulate a concrete plan in regards to the current season. 'Their work is now focusing on scenarios encompassing the months of July and August, including the possibility that the UEFA competitions restart after the completion of domestic leagues', the letter stated.
UEFA is looking to alter the season calendar in order to make sure that all the leagues including the European competitions are concluded before the upcoming season could commence. While public health remains the top priority, UEFA acknowledged that abandoning the season will only be the last resort if they fail to navigate past the pandemic scenario.