Premier League Chief Executive Richard Masters has revealed plans for supporters to return to stadiums for the final two rounds of matches this season.
Up to 10,000 fans are set to be allowed into stadiums on the weekend commencing the 18th of May, as well as for the season’s conclusion on May 23rd.
“Hopefully the final two fixtures of our season will have up to 10,000 supporters in them all,” Masters told the BBC.
“”We’ve got to go past those first initial steps in the government’s roadmap to get there, so hopefully that will be a fantastic finale to end the season.”
However, the league faces a conundrum in ensuring that all 20 teams receive the opportunity to play one fixture in front of those home fans, with a round of fixtures being shifted to May 18th-20th to accommodate this.
Masters revealed that the Premier League has lost “around £2bn” since the start of the pandemic in matchday and broadcast revenue.
“Clubs have continued to invest in competitive match-day squads and the Premier League has continued to make good all of its contributions throughout the pyramid and wider football.
“But the ramifications are that ultimately if there’s less money coming into football, then there’ll be less money going out in the short term.”
This week marked exactly one year since the last Premier League game was played in front of a capacity crowd – as Leicester City beat Aston Villa 4-0.
Restrictions were briefly eased in certain areas of the country in December, as some clubs were allowed to play in front of 2,000 socially distant spectators.
“Beyond that, from the beginning of next season, our goal is to have full stadia and the government’s roadmap offers us that opportunity,” Masters revealed.
“There’s a lot of water to pass under the bridge before that can happen but that’s our ultimate goal: the return of full vibrant Premier League stadia and a return to the normal Premier League.”