Premier League given green light for June restart

Liverpool could still claim their first Premier League title.

Premier League given green light for June restart

Premier League clubs received a boost to their hopes of completing the season on Monday as the government published a “roadmap” that could see the return of elite sport in England from 1 June.

As the 20 English top-flight clubs met for further talks on “Project Restart”, ministers announced plans to ease the coronavirus lockdown.

Premier League inches closer to season’s completion

Under step two of that process, which cannot begin any earlier than 1 June, sporting events would be allowed “to take place behind closed doors for broadcast, while avoiding the risk of large-scale social contact”.

Such events will only be allowed if sufficient progress is made in limiting the spread of the virus.

Premier League clubs had been planning for a return to action no earlier than the week beginning June 8.

English top-flight clubs  had been planning for a return to action no earlier than the week beginning June 8.

English top-flight clubs were talking on Monday about a possible resumption despite growing disquiet among players over safety issues and divisions over proposals on how to finish the season.

Before the resumption of matches can be considered, protocols need to be agreed on how to return to group training safely and on how the Premier League would deal with positive tests.

Brighton confirmed on Sunday that a third member of their squad had tested positive.

Cases have also been found in squads in Germany, where the Bundesliga is due to restart this weekend, as well as Italy, Spain and Portugal in recent days.

German second-tier side Dynamo Dresden placed their entire squad into a 14-day quarantine on Saturday after discovering two new cases of the virus.

However, five La Liga players who tested positive have been quarantined at home, while their teammates continue to train in preparation for a return to action.

Players not sold on early restart

In England, players have voiced their concerns at the prospect of being rushed back into training and, eventually, into playing a contact sport at a time when the rest of the public remain encouraged to abide by social-distancing guidelines.

The UK has been one of the worst-hit countries in the global pandemic, with the government officially recording nearly 32 000 deaths of people who had tested positive for COVID-19.

“We are just people too,” tweeted Norwich midfielder Todd Cantwell on Sunday.

The Premier League’s desire to overcome so many obstacles to complete the campaign is rooted in economic necessity.

Clubs stand to lose an estimated £1 billion ($1.2 billion) if the season is not finished, £760 million of which comes from TV contracts that would be satisfied if games were played behind closed doors.

Financial worries are also causing divisions among the 20 top-flight clubs, which could end the chances of a return to action.

A group of clubs near the bottom of the table are fiercely opposed to plans to play the remaining 92 games at neutral venues.

“With all these compromises and health risks we are asked to finish a competition that bears no resemblance to the one we started,” Watford’s chairman and chief executive Scott Duxbury told the club’s website.

“So is this fair? Does it have any semblance of sporting integrity? Of course not.”

Executives at Brighton, West Ham and Aston Villa have also publicly opposed the neutral-venues plan with the suspicion they will only back down if there is an agreement to scrap relegation this season.

However, that could cause even more financial hardship to the league as a whole.

Broadcasters are not keen on spending hundreds of millions for a series of glorified friendlies should the jeopardy of relegation be removed.

English Football League chairman Rick Parry suggested last week that legal action would be launched if promotion were denied to three clubs from the second-tier Championship.

Supporters face a long wait to be allowed to attend matches, with the latest guidelines recognising a return to sport in front of a crowd “may only be fully possible significantly later depending on the reduction in numbers of infections”.

© Agence France-Presse, by Kieran Canning

Source : The South African More   

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Self-sabotage: Here’s how to stop being your own worst enemy

Self-sabotage is negative behaviour and thought patterns that restrict you from achieving your full potential in life and love.

Self-sabotage: Here’s how to stop being your own worst enemy

When your relationships, career and personal goals never seem to go anywhere and you find yourself going through the same negative thought patterns and behaviour, you could be guilty of self-sabotage.

Acknowledging and understanding self-sabotaging habits can help you to challenge your thinking, thus encouraging you to move away from fear, and towards success in all aspects of your life.

You Are Your Own Worst Enemy. Hand holding movie clapper

Ways we ‘commit’ self-sabotage:

In relationships

  • You avoid talking about your feelings and about issues that you feel strongly about and expect your partner to know what’s on your mind.
  • You run away when things get difficult and wonder why you always end up in the same situations with the same type of people.
  • You fail to acknowledge other people’s feelings and point of view — it’s your way or the high-way.

Your studies and career

  • You procrastinate or focus on low-priority tasks when you should be tackling the high-priority ones first.
  • You criticise yourself too much and fail to be productive as a result.
  • You move from one job to another when things get uncomfortable, thus you never deal with the real problem.

Money matters

  • You don’t keep a budget and you spend money on items you rarely use or don’t need.
  • You don’t save money, and even when you do, you fail to restrict yourself from using your savings casually.
  • You pay for apps and subscriptions that you rarely use or need.

Steps to overcome self-sabotage

  • It is crucial to communicate openly and honestly with others, express your views and fears. If you find you are always pushing people away, take a step back, acknowledge your behaviour and take responsibility for your actions.
  • Work on your confidence, when we focus on our inadequacies we stand in the way of our success.
  • Overcome your fear of failure. Think back to all your achievements and make a list of the obstacles you overcame to get there.
  • Let go of perfectionism. When we try to be too perfect, we end up failing to try and that sets us back a great deal.
  • Work on ways to manage your money, create a budget and stick to it. Open a fixed savings account that you can’t withdraw from for a period of time.
  • Practise self-care and self-love. Making changes in your life takes time and patience: Be kind to yourself, allow yourself to heal.
Source : The South African More   

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