Nigel Kahn’s Column
Desperate days call for desperate measures and football in total closure three quarters a way through a season is in a desperate place.
The baronesses call last Saturday for the league season to be void didn’t go down well in many quarters but it did have some sympathy with many fans backing the idea. Though most seemed to be those that hate Liverpool and would take great delight in them being denied the title they deserve to win this season.
The problem at the moment there seems to be no end in sight of football being able to be resumed with fans in the stadium, which frankly is the whole part football is played in my opinion.
The baroness’s option of voiding does leave many questions for the authorities to deal with, If they give the league title to Liverpool, as they deserve, how do they decide the Champions League spots for the following season. Who gets promoted up, the top 2 in the championship are not cut adrift from clubs below them and the way games pan out in that league it is possible that neither W.B.A or Leeds would get automatic promotion.
If the season s voided then the problem of how the distribution of money the league awards to clubs will be possible be challenged.
Firstly, The TV companies will not be handing over the full amount as contracted as the full games of the contract has not been played. Then there will be the argument over how league placing money will be distributed, especially considering Aston Villa have a game in hand which if they won could push them 3 places higher which equates to about 5 million pound extra, aside from the fact it would take them out of the bottom 3 and possible relegation if the league decided to continue with that outcome.
There are so many outcomes it is laborious to list so what I outline is how I believe football should restart once we get the ability to play games with crowds in the stadiums.
Its possibly extreme but it could work, but it would change possibly forever the calendar that football is played to.
I would be now looking to restart the leagues on the 8th of August, allowing for 9 weeks of league football, 2 free weekends to enable International fixtures to resume, playoffs for Euro 2021 are still required, and also 3 Weeks to finish the FA cup and hold a final, the season would then finish with the FA Cup final being held on the 30th of November.
To enable this all football contracts would mandatorily be extended by 6 months, with no players being allowed to leave any clubs.
December would be left football free to allow the player 4 weeks of not playing and allow an 8-week transfer window to open.
The new league would begin on January 1, 2021, and would run for 9 months until the end of September 2021. Scrap the league cup for that season and just play the FA cup as a midweek tournament in its place. Once the season ends by September 30th, this would then allow for one month of conditioning training before the cancelled international tournaments of 2020, Euro Championship and the Copa America to take place across November 2021.
All football will then be in close season again in the December of 2021, again allowing for the transfer window to open.
The 2022 season would then start again in January and play out in the same way as the 2021 season. The league campaign will again end at the End of September allowing a short 2-week break for all footballers before the World Cup squads join together and play friendlies at the end of October, Early November before the Qatar 2022 world cup is scheduled to start on the 22nd of November.
The World cup has been shortened and is due to finish on the 18th December, this will allow players some time off before the league campaigns can begin again the following year.
It is at this point the league has a decision to make, it could decide to have an Eight-month break and return the league to its traditional August to May running order, or, it could stay as a yearly league starting in January and finishing at the end of September, early October.
Even without the current cessation of football, the league calendar would have been disrupted by the World cup in Qatar in 2022, this will play havoc with clubs whose players will need to be free in November and not be available again till the January. What I have outlined above actually will allow the world cup to take place with no disruption at all to league football.
The big flaw in what I propose is it destroys our traditional football way of life in not just this country but across the whole of Europe. It would need agreeing not just by the Premier League, nor the EFL, but would need all leagues across Europe to agree so it would need sanctioning by UEFA as well and possibly FIFA.
What it does do is give the authorities the chance to standardize world wide the football calendar so all International tournaments across the world would, World Cups, Euros, Copa America and African cup of Nations, as well as the Asia Trophy could all now be in November/December months so no more domestic clubs losing players through their domestic season to play in these continental tournaments.
This is football chance to revolutionise and standardize itself around the world, Do I think they will take it. Not a chance, but I live in hope.
Feel free to criticise below in the comments but don’t just call me an idiot and run away and hide, explain why you think I’m an idiot, we can then discuss as adults,
And then agree I was right.