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UEFA lifts Saturday afternoon TV blackout for England, Scotland

04 Apr 2020 / 19:05 H.

LONDON: UEFA has lifted a ban on the live screening of Premier League games kicking off at 3pm in England and Scotland for the rest of the season.

The blackout has long been in place to protect attendances at matches.

The move by European football’s governing body is seen a step towards restarting some domestic competitions in Britain behind closed doors in order to complete the season, interrupted by the coronavirus crisis.

A UEFA statement read: “UEFA has lifted the ‘blocked hours’ protection granted to the UEFA member associations for England and Scotland for the remainder of the 2019/20 football season, following requests from the relevant national associations as a result of measures taken in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The virus has caused mass postponements across league and cup competitions.

Football chiefs said on Friday that the game in Britain was on hold “until it is safe to resume”.

UEFA has warned that clubs in competitions that it deems have been cancelled prematurely may not be eligible to play in next season’s Champions League or Europa League.

It followed a move from the Belgian football league to recommend that the current season be declared finished early due to the coronavirus pandemic, with the present table accepted as final.

The Premier League and English Football League remain committed to completing the 2019/20 season.

It was reported earlier this week that a World Cup-style camp is one solution being considered by Premier League clubs as a way of completing the campaign. — AFP

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