Coronavirus: China’s football season may get underway in June/July
‘Based on the assessment of the current situation, the new season will start at the end of June or the beginning of July.’
IMAGE: Supporters of Wuhan Zall football team welcome the team when they arrive arrive at Wuhan railway station in Hubei, on April 18, 2020. Photograph: Getty Images
The Chinese Super League (CSL) looks set to start its new season at the end of June or in early July and will not have to shorten the campaign, Guangzhou R&F CEO Huang Shenghua said.
The CSL was originally scheduled to kick off on February 22 but was pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected more than 2.33 million and killed about 160,000 people globally.
China, where the new coronavirus emerged late last year, has reported 82,735 cases and 4,632 deaths.
“Based on the assessment of the current situation, the new season will start at the end of June or the beginning of July,” Xinhua quoted Huang as saying on Sunday.
The Chinese Football Association have yet to announce a start date, with travel restrictions for foreigners to prevent the spread of the virus through imported cases proving one of the stumbling blocks.
Former Manchester United midfielder Marouane Fellaini became the first CSL player to return a positive test for the virus upon his arrival in China last month and the Belgian was forced into a 14-day quarantine.
CSL side Wuhan Zall, who travelled to Spain in January for a winter training camp, returned to the city over the weekend after landing in Shenzhen last month where they were quarantined before being discharged from hospital.