Manchester United should resume their Premier League campaign against Tottenham Hotspur on June 13th at a neutral venue, according to the latest set of ‘Project Restart’ proposals.
All 20 Premier League chiefs met yesterday and agreed that no team will be allowed to play games at home and match venues will be kept secret until the last minute in order to prevent fans from congregating outside the ground.
This means that United’s next game will not be held at Spurs’ ground but at one of around 10 neutral Premier League venues.
City centre stadia are likely to be excluded from the project.
The Telegraph reports that a strict set of criteria will be used to determine the venues, based on:
• ‘How easy it will be for fans to gather and travel
• How easy it will be to prevent fans getting close to the stadium and the ease of implementing social distancing
• The infection rate for COVID-19 in the local area
• Previous history when it comes to games being disrupted.’
The fact that games will all be held at neutral venues is arguably an advantage to the Red Devils. They only have four remaining home games versus five away. Those home ties are against Sheffield United, Bournemouth, Southampton and West Ham – all of which United would hope to beat at a neutral venue.
By contrast, the five remaining away games are against Spurs, Brighton, Aston Villa, Crystal Palace and Leicester – all arguably tough away grounds.
The final games of the Premier League season are scheduled for July 26th.
The club chairmen will meet again on Friday to approve conditions for clubs to return to training.
United are reported to have already recalled players in lockdown overseas so that they can complete quarantine in time for a mid-May training restart.