MOSCOW, April 3. /TASS/. The Russian Premier League (RPL) may resume its suspended season to complete remaining eight rounds of the Russian football championship in June or July, RPL President Sergei Pryadkin said on Friday.
The Executive Committee of the Russian Football Union (RFU) extended on Wednesday the postponement of all football matches in Russia, including RPL matches, until May 31 over the ongoing global spread of the novel coronavirus. Prior to the shutdown the league’s clubs completed 22 out of 30 scheduled rounds of the championship. On April 1, the Union of European Football Associations made a decision to allow completion of national tournaments.
"We have several options regarding the resumption of the championship varying from early June and until mid-July in order to observe UEFA recommendations to complete the championship before the end of August," the RPL press service quoted Pryadkin as saying.
"We fully support this idea and intend to hold the remaining eight rounds in order to preserve the integrity of the tournament and to fulfill our obligations to clubs’ partners and the league," he said. "By planning the restart, we will be guided by the priorities of the provision of health safety for fans and all participants of matches based on orders of the executive authorities."
In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.
On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. To date, more than 1,050,000 people have been infected worldwide and over 55,700 deaths have been reported. That said, over 224,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.
So far, a total of 4,149 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 281 patients having recovered from the virus. The country’s latest data indicates 34 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.