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Canaries Trust warns Premier League early restart would be ‘potentially dangerous’

PUBLISHED: 16:00 02 May 2020 | UPDATED: 16:12 02 May 2020

Norwich City will receive an advanced payment from the Premier League, according to reports. Picture: Joe Giddens/PA Images

Norwich City will receive an advanced payment from the Premier League, according to reports. Picture: Joe Giddens/PA Images

PA Wire/PA Images

The Canaries Trust has called an early restart of the Premier League “ill conceived and potentially dangerous” during the coronavirus pandemic.

Canaries Trust Logo 2015Canaries Trust Logo 2015

The trust, which is run by volunteers to raise money to buy shares in Norwich City on behalf of fans, fears that the Premier League’s Operation Restart will cause further coronavirus spread.

A spokesman said: “At a time when Covid-19 is still rife, and with no likelihood of a vaccine in the foreseeable future, we feel that football has become something of an irrelevance, and whilst we can understand the desire to see the season completed, we can see no conceivable way in which it can be done in a safe and fair way.

“The increasingly bizarre suggestions that are appearing in the media, such as players having to train in face masks and CGI fans being used on TV coverage to create atmosphere, are making a mockery of the game we love.”

READ MORE: Carry on planning for football’s return, says Uefa expert

From left, Michael Bailey, chairman Robin Sainty and Darren Eadie at the Canaries Trust 2015 AGM.From left, Michael Bailey, chairman Robin Sainty and Darren Eadie at the Canaries Trust 2015 AGM.

The trust has highlighted that players are concerned about an early restart of the league, which has seen no games since March 9.

“It is becoming apparent that a number of players are already beginning to express their personal concerns about the risks to both themselves and their families,” they added.

“Some may refuse to play, or would only do so reluctantly and under duress. In our opinion, no player, numerous support staff, or the emergence services, should be put in such a position during these challenging times.”

It warned that as the country misses the sport, it must not put safety at risk.

“We all miss football and desperately want it back, but not at any cost, nor in a format that is highly likely to be nothing short of farcical.

READ MORE: Project Restart – clubs asked to consider overseas staff recalls

“We feel that it is too early for the game to return and will continue to be so until the safety of everyone involved can be assured. In what format it eventually returns is a debate for another day, although we feel that if games cannot be played under the same conditions as the rest of the season they should not be played at all.

“For the moment, however, personal safety, rather than money, must be the primary consideration.”


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