The EFL has joined the Premier League and suspended all professional football in England until at least the 3rd April due to ongoing concerns around the coronavirus.
After the government announced yesterday, it had no plans to cancel mass gatherings it appeared the weekend’s fixtures would go ahead. However, following news that the Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta had contracted the virus along with concerns over several players self-isolating at other Premier League club’s, the sports governing bodies showed a united front in postponing all football for three weeks.
The situation is undoubtedly unprecedented, and the decisive action taken by the authorities split fan opinion when they took to social media to react. Many felt it was the correct decision and that health came before football while others questioned why football was going against government advice and cancelling games.
Others were concerned over the financial implications for lower league clubs and wondered how the decision affects issues such as players contracts and potential season ticket refunds.
As the following selection of responses to the EFL statement on Twitter demonstrates, It is a hugely emotive issue with many differing opinions.
Well done. Correct decision.
— 🏴🇪🇺Dylan Thomas🇪🇺🏴 (@DylanThomas90) March 13, 2020
Not really. 80% will contract the virus regardless of what we do. Suspending football is pointless considering the amount of public interaction elsewhere that will continue. Will cripple the economy needlessly imo. If you’re more vulnerable then you should self isolate
— Matt ⚽️ (@LambrosMatthew) March 13, 2020
What does this mean for people with season tickets and pre bought tickets?
— ….. (@_LAFC_) March 13, 2020
To be fair we don’t pay players when the games are on
— andy haynes (@hund85) March 13, 2020
Seriously ?? FFS, there are MILLIONS going to work – yet you suspend football – our only pleasure apart from sex……
— Graham Gee (@GrahamG14843952) March 13, 2020
Oh yeah cus this will stop it spreading. what's the point? It's going to get worse anyway you can't stop it.
— Liam (@Liambwfc_) March 13, 2020
Hope you haven't just killed a couple of the lower league clubs who need the match day revenue to survive.
— Ben Harte (@BenHno1) March 13, 2020
With all these games postponed, my usual valuable insights on here into the game of Association Football every Saturday afternoon and Tuesday evening will now be replaced by my expert opinion on viruses and how they should be managed. You’re welcome.
— Luis Adriano (@LuisAdrianoUK) March 13, 2020
Simple. Season finished. No promotion or relagation from any division. Start again in August. Crown champions in each league. Can't relegate teams that may escape.
— Kato (@pbennett74) March 13, 2020
So the League Two match I have a ticket for is cancelled – but luckily my local National League team have a home game. I expect non-league gates will rise as fans look for entertainment elsewhere. Possibly rendering this endeavour pointless.
— H (@ppnd84) March 13, 2020
Technically loans and contracts end June 30. So loaned players have till then
— Marcus Ralphson (@MarcusRalphson) March 13, 2020
Or people that book away games in advance before the whole Coronavirus outbreak
— Tommy May (@tommymay00) March 13, 2020