The English Premier League has announced September 12 as the date when the 2020-21 season will commence, following a delayed conclusion to the just ended campaign due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2019-20 campaign had been due to end in May, but the coronavirus crisis led to the suspension of all major sports activities across the UK and in other places around the globe.
Games resumed in on June 17 after the UK government approved the return of professional sports since the beginning of June. The delayed season concluded this past weekend, though this season’s English FA Cup, and the UEFA European competitions will run into August.
As such, the Premier League stakeholders agreed to postpone the traditional August start date for the campaign to allow for all other 2019-20 competitions involving its teams to finish.
The 2020/21 campaign will finish on September 12 and run till May 23, 2021, with the Premier League saying it will seek to consult with both English FA and English Football League (EFL) on the planning of all other local competitions.
Elsewhere, the EFL, which operates the three divisions directly under the top-flight Premier League, will additionally start its campaign on September 12.
EFL sides in League One and League Two voted to terminate their seasons early because of the enforced postponement, however, play restarted in the Championship from June 17.
Leeds United and West Bromwich Albion both earned promotion to the top-flight league by finishing first and second, respectively, in the Championship. Brentford, Fulham, Cardiff City and Swansea City will compete in a mini knockout-out tournament to decide the third side to join the Premier League next season.
The play-offs will take place from July 26 – 30, with Wembley set to host the final game on August 4.