HomeAnalysisScotland abandons top-flight season amid coronavirus outbreak

Scotland abandons top-flight season amid coronavirus outbreak

Scotland on Monday became the latest country to abandon its top-flight football season due to the coronavirus outbreak with Celtic declared champions.

โ€œWe would all have rather seen the league season played out on pitches, in stadiums and in front of supporters,โ€ league (SPFL) chairman Murdoch MacLennan said.

According to him, COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on sporting competitions around the world and the repercussions will be felt for a long time.

While the English Premier League is determined to find a way to continue amid the global pandemic, the tendency in Scotland, with significantly less income tied up in television contracts, was always to cancel.

The Netherlands, Belgium and France have all scrapped leagues though the German Bundesliga resumed at the weekend.

Italy and Spain also hope to start again in June.

European governing body UEFA wants all leagues to present plans on how to resume or give reasons for cancellation by May 25.

The decision in Scotland hands Celtic a record-equalling ninth championship in a row in final standings decided on average points per game.

Celticโ€™s long-standing Glasgow rivals Rangers were a distant second with Motherwell also in a Europa League place in third.

Fourth-placed Aberdeen is expected to be handed the Europa League place given to the Scottish Cup winners with that competition suspended.

Hearts were relegated, however, have not ruled out a legal challenge against demotion should talks over league reconstruction fail.

โ€œOn Friday, Ladbrokes Premiership clubs expressed their clear and unanimous view that there was no realistic prospect of completing the outstanding fixtures from Season 2019 and 2020.

โ€œThe focus of all those involved in the game will now turn to how we get football up and running again safely as soon as possible,โ€ SPFL chief executive Neil Doncaster said.

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