Premier League games to have water break in each half under fresh protocols

The Premier League will introduce mandatory water breaks in each half of matches when football restarts next week.

During the mandatory one-minute breaks, players will drink from personalised water bottles to ensure they can rehydrate hygienically.

It is just one of the new protocols signed off by the Premier League on Thursday following the latest meeting on how football will look in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Premier league is set to restart next Wednesday (June 17) with a double-header of matches that represent four teams' games in hand over the rest of the top flight.

Relegation-threatened Aston Villa will host European hopefuls Sheffield United at 6pm, before Manchester City host Arsenal at 8.15pm.

The timing of the drinks breaks will be at the discretion of referees, but they are expected to occur around the midway point of each half and will take place during daytime and evening matches, according to the Daily Mail.

Fans will of course be absent from stadiums, with all 92 remaining games of the Premier League season to be televised.

Other changes will include players coming out of the tunnel in small groups rather than as two teams, the pre-match line-up abandoned and the fourth official and medical staff wearing face masks.

Strict guidelines will prohibit players and coaching staff from encroaching on the referee or his assistants during the game, while spitting has been banned as well as contact between players following goals.

Clubs' pre-match routines and travel arrangements will also be very different to before the pandemic, with overnight stays at hotels discouraged and chartered flights preferred to coach travel.

When it is more practical to travel by road – such as before local derbies such as Liverpool's visit to Everton on June 21 – squads are likely to travel on several coaches rather than just one, to ensure social distancing can be observed.

There will also be strict limits on the number of people permitted at stadiums on match-days, with grounds will be split into different zones, each with specified limits on numbers of people who can enter.

Coronavirus in sport

The mail reports there will also be deep cleaning of corner flags, goalposts, substitution boards and match balls before and after each fixture.

Substitution boards are also likely to require some extra disinfection during matches and at half-time.

Sign up to the Mirror Football email here for the latest news and transfer gossip.

Source: Read Full Article