Paris Saint-Germain will be crowned 2019-20 Ligue 1 champions after it was decided that a resumption of the current campaign would be impossible amid the coronavirus lockdown restrictions, according to reports in France.
PSG boasted a 12-point lead with a game in hand at the summit of the French top division at the time of the shutdown of sports in France and, with large-scale public gatherings outlawed in the country until September, football chiefs have determined that the Parisian team’s lead is enough for them to be justifiably crowned as champions, according to L’Equipe.
France’s Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced on Tuesday that football will not return before September, even behind closed doors, forcing discussions on how to effectively draw a line under the current campaign and establish which teams will qualify for Europe, as well as establishing which teams are due to be promoted and relegated.
It is expected that these issues will be addressed by determining each team’s points-per-game ratio, which will come as a blow to Amiens and Toulouse who are now due to be relegated despite having 10 games left to play in the top flight.
PSG, Marseille and Rennes, meanwhile, will secure qualification to next season’s Champions League, while Lille, Reims and Nice will represent France in the Europa League.
FC Lorient and RC Lens are expected to have their promotion from Ligue 2 confirmed by the news also.
Championnats pro terminés. Classements figés. PSG champion de L1. Critère/ratio de la FFF retenus.
A tweet issued by L’Equipe reporter Domenighetti Joel said, via translation: “Pro championships completed. Fixed rankings. PSG champion of L1. FFF criterion / ratio retained.”
The measures will need to be voted on by the Ligue de Football Professionnel in May but they are expected to be validated by the general assembly before being implemented.
It remains to be seen if the actions taken regarding French domestic football will also be implemented elsewhere. The English Premier League has yet to announce formal plans as to the resumption of their season, while German football is set to return on May 9 behind closed doors.
A recent statement by UEFA announced that Europe’s domestic leagues will be required to be in a position to communicate plans for the completion of their seasons by May 25. In the case of English football, it appears as if the Paris Saint-Germain situation establishes a precedent for Liverpool to be awarded this season’s Premier League crown.
Jurgen Klopp’s team are currently top of the division, some 25 points clear of second-placed Manchester City. However, if the red half of Liverpool might be celebrating this news there will be cause for concern for the three teams currently in England’s relegation spots – Bournemouth, Aston Villa and Norwich City.
If the situation mirrors that in France, Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth may be granted a reprieve as there will be no playoff game to determine a third promoted side – meaning just Aston Villa and Norwich drop down a division.