Christian Purslow says PL is 'nowhere near formula to complete season'

Premier League is ‘nowhere near having found a formula to complete the season’, says Aston Villa chief Christian Purslow – as he suggests issues of dealing with players who catch coronavirus are still unsolved

  • Aston Villa chief executive Christian Purslow says a lot of issues remain unsolved
  • The Premier League is looking to move forward with its ‘Project Restart’ 
  • Villa are currently 19th in the Premier League table with one game in hand  
  • Purslow says there are obvious issues about players contracting coronavirus 
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Christian Purslow believes issues surrounding players contracting coronavirus are yet to be resolved, as the Premier League works towards a return to action. 

The Aston Villa chief executive added that he believed the Premier League was ‘nowhere near having found the formula to complete the season’, despite the prospect of ‘Project Restart’ reigniting action on June 12. 

With games set to be played behind closed doors, some relegation-threatened clubs are opposed to the concept of ‘neutral hubs’ to finish the season and in an interview with The Times, Purslow says it is the ‘duty’ of all 20 clubs to find a workable solution. 

Aston Villa chief executive Christian Purslow says a workable solution still needs to be found

Villa are currently 19th in the Premier League table, two points from safety with a game in hand

‘Of course, I have to look after my club’s interests but there is a duty on 20 Premier League clubs to find a formulation that we know is nowhere near perfect but gets football back to complete the 19-20 season,’ Purslow said. 

‘[That’s so] crucial issues at the top of the table can be resolved but that doesn’t ask people to agree to incredibly damaging changes for their own particular clubs. 

‘People have to see through that we need 20 clubs to be happy and that’s the statesmanship job that’s needed at the moment in the league.’

The Bundesliga will return on May 15 after receiving the all-clear from the German government

The 2019-20 season in France has been cancelled, with the title winners and relegation spots already decided, while the Bundesliga was given the go-ahead this week by the German government to resume the season on May 15. 

But in the UK, the government is said to be keen for professional football to return, yet Purslow says there’s still a long way to go, with the issue of positive COVID-19 results when play gets underway at the forefront of his thinking. 

Callum Hudson-Odoi was the first Premier League player to test positive for coronavirus

‘If you’re really saying “Could Boris Johnson do an Emmanuel Macron?” everybody knows that’s possible,’ Purslow admitted. 

‘We’re talking here about a known, global, devastating epidemic that is still at large. It’s obvious with 500 or so Premier League footballers that we’re going to have positive tests, that players are going to get sick and that’s going to have an impact on teams’ ability to field a full-strength team.’

Aston Villa are currently 19th in the table, two points adrift of safety but do have a game in hand on their rivals.  

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