• Conference call of Premier League 20 clubs on April 3
  • Premier League’s broadcasters £3b-a-year deal expires July 31.

By Andrew Atkinson Chief Sports Editor

THE Premier League are looking to return to playing fixtures – behind closed doors – on the weekend commencing May 2, with a scheduled finish date of July 12.

The proposals will be thrashed out on a Conference call of the Premier League 20 clubs on April 3, which will need to be endorsed by the Government, public health bodies and the PFA, in the aftermath of the coronavirus (COVID-19) shutdown.

The Premier League’s financial reliance on broadcasters £3billion-a-year deal expires on July 31.

It is reported broadcasters could demand up to £762m – if the season is not completed.

Broadcasters are reportedly pushing the Premier League to provide clarity – as soon as possible – after losing subscribers.

Informal talks have taken place between Premier League club executives in the wake of clubs will find it difficult to pay players’ wages, the longer football’s lockdown continues. The £762m of combined income under threat is not divided equally, and would range from £57m for the Premier League winners, to £20m for the team who finish bottom.

It has been touted to complete the season – without promotion and relegation – on the grounds that the integrity of the competition is threatened.

There is also no guarantee that the EFL campaign will be completed.

Clubs at the top of the Championship have reportedly begun making preparations to take legal action – if they are denied promotion.

Players from Premier League clubs have been in isolation, since the coronavirus outbreak, having had symptoms of COVID-19.

On this front the Premier League officials will face the task of convincing players to return to action.

It is reported that they are not insured for coronavirus, due to it not listed as a critical illness. Players have sought clarification, but reportrdly are being advised they are not covered.

Deputy chief medical officer Jenny Harries has warned the UK could remain in varying degrees of lockdown – up to six months.

The Premier League will continue to liaise with the UK Government.

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