| 6.1°C Dublin

The best thing football could do right now is nothing

Close

Lockdown: General view outside Bournemouth Football Club

Lockdown: General view outside Bournemouth Football Club

Getty Images

Lockdown: General view outside Bournemouth Football Club

Even before yesterday's Premier League meeting began, it was clear that this would not be a forum to find "solutions" on how to finish the season, crown Liverpool champions or anything like that. The tone had already drastically shifted since Tuesday and Uefa's video-conference.

Up until then, there had been some feeling that yesterday's conference call would represent some kind of decision-day, where the Premier League would vote on the many contingency plans that had been put forward.

Those included everything from expanding next season's competition to 22 clubs to mathematical models to decide positions and just trying to play football between July and September.

The last option represents the closest to what will happen, but that wasn't through the choice of any kind of vote.

It was forced upon them by circumstances, and the realisation that extending the postponement to April 30 is "all they can do".

Anything else would be completely hostage to the Covid-19 situation.

This is something else that has marked such a change in the last few days.

There was initially an almost naive - and widespread - feeling that football needed to make decisions, to offer some clarity on what next.

There has quickly been a realisation that they pretty much have to be patient, that there's no point in doing anything that goes beyond 'wait and see'. The situation really is too big, with repercussions way beyond the game.

For their part, Uefa were key to this, with this game-wide stance pretty much set by Tuesday's video-conference. That was the greatest consequence of that meeting, and why the postponement of Euro 2020 to Euro 2021 was also so symbolic. It caused a shift in the thinking. Everyone was encouraged to take a breath, to realise there's no need to rush this.

It also, admittedly, fits with a greater drive around Europe, and in England. Everyone wants to finish the season.

This was something else that was made clear by the outcome of the Premier League meeting, and the FA board's agreement to extend the 2019-'20 campaign beyond the June 1 cut-off.

There is an acceptance now that, no matter what happens, 2020-'21 will be affected.

The difference is that, even if it is, it can still be figured out how to truncate that season in a fairer manner. That is not the case with 2019-'20. Almost any solution would be some way unsatisfactory, not least to the broadcasters who pay so much. This decision also buys time in that regard.

As such, given we already have so much of this season done, it is on the whole better to try and complete this one and shorten the next.

That will throw up other complications of course, and they will form the next aspect of all this to consume the football authorities.

How, for example, do you deal with the many contracts that end on June 30?

What happens to the summer transfer window? It will surely be postponed too.

How do clubs survive, and how much will the Premier League give to the lower leagues in badly needed solidarity?

This all has to be figured out next. For now, though, the authorities have done pretty much all they can. They've consequently made the right decision, in not making much of a decision at all.