Whilst the UK government have made a habit of failing to deliver on promises, the latest suggestion that football fans could make a return to stadiums before the end of the season looks to be significant light at the end of the tunnel.
Football was one of the last sports to be halted in the Premier League when the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020, and it has been a tough time for players and fans alike. Whilst every game has been broadcast on all of the available TV channels in the UK, such a huge part of the fabric of English football has been missing and many teams have lacked energy and conviction in empty stadiums.
Initial talks have suggested that a maximum of 10,000 fans would be allowed in to matches, from 17th May onwards and whilst this is a relatively small percentage in the grand scale of Premier League football grounds–it would make a monumental impact to the atmosphere inside stadiums.
The UK Government has been quick to point out that the dates being mapped out are the earliest opportunities for fans to return and things to reopen but there appears to be cause for optimism in the UK.
Numbers are dramatically down in terms of COVID 19 in the UK and the vaccine roll out has been heralded as a huge success, suggesting that the battle with the disease could be coming to an end. Euro 2021 and the Olympics are two huge sporting events on the horizon this summer and how sports fans would love to find themselves back at the action soon.
Final day drama?
Should everything go to plan, there will be one weekend of Premier League fixtures to play after the 17th May and how fans would love to access some final day drama. Manchester City look to be running away with the league title but face a tricky looking tie with Everton on the final day and won’t want to be needing points when it matters.
Liverpool take on Crystal Palace whilst Leicester take on Tottenham, a plethora of sides that could well find themselves with European placings to play for at the end of the campaign. At the bottom of the table, Sheffield United take on Burnley and Fulham host Newcastle, games that could have a huge impact on who beats the drop, and it could be a monumental day for fans of English football.