Soccer leagues debate resuming play

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Photo from Wikimedia Commons

European soccer leagues are taking different approaches to the question of resuming play this season.

Tyler Zeman, Staff Writer

With the future of the four major soccer leagues in America still uncertain, European leagues are starting to make the first moves. 

The biggest news is coming from the German league, Bundesliga, and the Italian league, Serie A, as they look to get back to practicing at the start of May.

For the Bundesliga, this makes sense as Germany has been one of the countries that has been able to contain the spread of the coronavirus and provide those affected with a good chance of making a full recovery. As for the players, they have all been healthy with no real concerns coming from the teams regarding safety. 

For Italy, this comes as a surprise because the country has been heavily affected by Covid-19. Also, many players are still being affected by the virus and still need to recover from it. For example, Juventus star midfielder Paulo Dybala is still positive for the virus after first contracting it six weeks ago. This is why many question whether the return of the Italian league is too early still.

If these leagues do start play earlier than other professional sports leagues, it could offer an opportunity for each to boost their popularity. With sports fans in general and soccer fans specifically eagerly awaiting the return of sports, the Bundesliga and Serie A could open doors for new fans.

Meanwhile, there are two leagues that will not return. Last week the Dutch league, Eredervise, abandoned its 2019-20 season, meaning there will be no crowned champion. In France, Ligue 1 will not return, and Paris Saint-Germain will be crowned champions. 

As for the leagues still on the fence, La Liga in Spain is looking to start player testing as soon as next week in hopes of opening training by mid-May at the earliest.

In England, the Premier League has had many players this week say they will not play during this pandemic. Liverpool ran away in the title chase, but the battle for spots in next season’s Champions League is still close, as is the fight among teams trying to avoid relegation.