The bookmakers are now going just 7/2 that Liverpool are crowned Premier League champions without playing any further matches this season. Indeed despite enjoying a huge25-point lead over second-placed Manchester City after 29 games, it is still mathematically possible for Pep Guardiola’s men to overtake the Reds.
Nevertheless, the odds available for “Will Liverpool be declared winners of the Premier League 2019/20 before another game is played – Yes”, have been slashed from 8/1 to 7/2.
When one looks at the actual odds on Liverpool winning their first ever Premier League title regardless of which decision is made regarding unplayed fixtures, Jurgen Klopp’s side are now 1/50 odds-on to become domestic champions.
As a percentage, this implies a massive 98% probability that the Reds end their thirty-year wait for a domestic league trophy.
On the other side of the coin, Manchester City are a 36/1 shot to pip Liverpool at the post, this implying that they have a perceived 2.7% chance of doing so.
Clearly there are no solutions to the current situation which will please everyone, however it would be a massively harsh decision were the Reds to be denied the title given their domestic dominance throughout the season. Indeed while the top-four and relegation battles have yet to be decided, the main prize will doubtless be heading to Anfield sometime in the future. The big question is, when and how?
Premier League chiefs will be holding an emergency meeting on Thursday 19th March in order to discuss plans for the conclusion of the 2019/20 season. As things stand, Liverpool sit a massive 25 points clear of second-placed Manchester City in the race for the Premier League title, however the fate of Jurgen Klopp’s side may be decided by the other 19 clubs in the top-flight.
Indeed Premier League bosses may have little option but to call upon a majority decision should it prove impossible to continue the season as planned. For any rule to be imposed, this would mean that 14 of the 20 Premier League club would need to agree on a decision.
One possible option would be to simply end the season as things stand, this idea certain to have the complete backing of Liverpool’s support. Another idea being bandied about is to have a play-off competition, while there have been calls for the complete season to be declared void.
Clearly Liverpool would be doing everything in their power to stop the Premier League campaign being written off in its entirety, understandable given that they are just two wins away from clinching their first ever Premier League title. The Reds have only lost one of their 29 league games this season, however should the season be declared void, then their efforts will have been completely wasted.
Manchester United will be eager for the league campaign to be resumed as quickly as possible given that they are just a single position and three points away from a Champions League berth. After going eleven games without defeat, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men would certainly fancy their chances of breaking into the top-four should the campaign get back underway.
Leicester City would be more than happy for the Premier League bosses to end the season as things stand given that they sit third in the table, while the sides at the opposite end of the division – namely Norwich City, Aston Villa and AFC Bournemouth – would benefit from the season being abandoned completely.
The announcement that all Premier League and Football League matches were to be postponed until early April at the very earliest came as no huge surprise to anyone given that numerous people involved with the sport – including players and managers – have been tested positive for coronavirus in the past few days.
The big question is: What happens next?
This morning, football chiefs took the decision to enforce a three-week break upon the sport as the pandemic continues to spread and other sporting events are also postponed.
What does this mean for the Premier League? Will the season be played to a conclusion? Will Liverpool be crowned Premier League champions for the first time ever at the end of this season?
Here’s all we know thus far…
The Premier League and Football League have been postponed until 3rd April at the earliest.
This postponement may well be extended depending on what the government advises and how far the virus has spread.
The likelihood is that a further decision will be made in the build-up to the proposed return to action on April 3rd.
Depending on how bad the pandemic proves to be, there is a possibility that no more football matches will take place in the Premier League and Football League before May.
The football action won’t return until the government and ruling authorities deem it safe to do so.
Clubs will be desperate to finish the season – especially Liverpool who are on course to be crowned Premier League champions – although as yet there remains a possibility that the season could be abandoned. This is a distinct possibility although in truth nobody actually knows as yet.
In order to complete the season by July at the latest and allow the players a rest before the start of 2020/21, play would need to resume by May although should the pandemic continue into June then the season would need to be abandoned and all results declared null and void.
The decision on whether Liverpool would be declared champions would be left to the Premier League board, in consultation with the other Premier League clubs.
UEFA are set to meet on Tuesday 17th March in order to discuss the future of this season’s Champions League, Europa League and the Euro 2020 tournament scheduled to take place this summer.
UEFA will likely announce that Euro 2020 will be postponed for a year, thus allowing domestic club football to continue into June or later and complete their seasons.
- Liverpool enjoy a 25-point lead at the top of the table
- Mathematically Manchester City can still catch the Reds
- Will Jurgen Klopp’s men actually be crowned as Premier League champions?
As things stand, British sport is still pretty much open for business although the likelihood is that there will be disruption in the weeks ahead due to the continued spread of Coronavirus.
Until government advice changes, the Premier League will carry on as normal although a sign of what might lie ahead came yesterday when it was announced that the fixture between Manchester City and Arsenal has been postponed due to Gunners players meeting Olympiakos owner Evangelos Marinakis who has since tested positive for the virus.
Indeed if the trend in France, Greece and Italy is to be followed, then the likelihood is that matches will take place behind closed doors.
Even without the added disruption of coronavirus, the domestic football calendar is jam-packed between now and the end of the season with just two midweek dates between now and the final day of the season on May 17th which aren’t being used for European matches. Where then can any postponed games be crammed into?
Indeed those two available midweek dates have been pencilled in for games which need to be rearranged due to the quarter-finals and semi-finals of the FA Cup. The final of this competition takes place on 23rd May and the Champions League final occurs just seven days later. Euro 2020 (should it take place) gets underway on June 12th.
Unless games take place in empty stadiums, it’s hard to see just how the season can finish. This in itself would raise plenty of issues, such as relegation and promotion from the Championship as well as top-four placings. Indeed even though everyone knows that Liverpool are going to win the title, this isn’t a cast-iron certainty with Man City mathematically able to catch them, even though realistically they won’t.
The legal and financial implications of relegating a team from a Premier League campaign that hasn’t been completed are pretty mind-blowing and the same is clearly true for sides battling for promotion into the top-flight. Scrapping the whole season and starting again is practically impossible – just imagine the outcry from Liverpool.
Nevertheless there is now a real possibility that the unthinkable could actually happen and that Liverpool might actually need to wait even longer for their first Premier League title.
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