A ball bearing the logo of the German second division Bundesliga football club Dynamo Dresden. Picture: ROBERT MICHAEL/DPA /AFP
A ball bearing the logo of the German second division Bundesliga football club Dynamo Dresden. Picture: ROBERT MICHAEL/DPA /AFP

London — The Premier League’s plans to resume its season disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic will be guided by  progress in Germany but “insurmountable” problems could result in a long delay, Crystal Palace chair Steve Parish says

Germany’s plans to restart competitive football on May 16 suffered an early setback after the entire team of second-tier Dynamo Dresden were placed in a two-week quarantine after two positive coronavirus tests.

“The German example could provide a blueprint for us and we can see some of the early challenges,” Parish told the BBC on Sunday.

“They may prove insurmountable, but the concern for us is that if they prove insurmountable now then we may be in for an extended period of not being able to play and that has huge ramifications for the game.

“We would be derelict in our duty if we didn’t find a way to try to bring the game back. It may prove beyond us.”

Premier League clubs are set to meet on Monday to discuss plans to resume matches in June at neutral venues and with no spectators present, provided there is government clearance.

Scott Duxbury, CEO of relegation-threatened Watford, said on Saturday that neutral venues were not fair and that at least six clubs were against the idea. Palace are among the teams opposed to the proposal.

“If we can play in our own stadiums that would be preferable for everybody, but for the moment that situation is with government and the authorities,” Parish said.

“The police have made it clear that they don’t say they can police every ground. I have enormous sympathy with Duxbury’s position. Having said that, I think it may well prove to be the least worst option.

“There are no easy answers, we have to work through it as a collective and we will come out with a consensus in the end.” 

Reuters