Russian Premier League proposes re-starting on June 21 or 28

FILE PHOTO: Champions League - Group G - Zenit Saint Petersburg v Olympique Lyonnais
FILE PHOTO: Champions League - Group G - Zenit Saint Petersburg v Olympique Lyonnais

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The Russian Premier League has put forward a plan to resume the season on June 21 or 28 following the suspension of matches during the COVID-19 pandemic, it said on Monday.

No games have been played in the 16-team top-flight since March 16 but the league announced on its website that it has proposed two solutions to clubs for the campaign to re-start with eight rounds of matches remaining. 

One option is a June 21 start with one round of games scheduled per week for the first two matchdays to ease the load on players followed by five matchdays on a twice-weekly basis, including midweek fixtures. The last matchday would then take place a week after the penultimate round of fixtures.

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Another option is to re-start the season on June 28 with one round of games scheduled for the first matchday followed by seven rounds of games on a twice-weekly basis.

"Both options are set up taking into account the possible completion of the Russian Cup, the decision on which will be made by the RFU (Russian Football Union)."

Discussions are continuing on how to resume training and get foreign players back to their clubs as well as whether fans will be allowed to attend when games get underway. 

Zenit St Petersburg top the standings on 50 points after 22 games, nine points clear of Lokomotiv Moscow and Krasnodar.

Russia has had over 80,000 coronavirus cases and almost 800 deaths since the disease was identified in China in December.

(Reporting by Philip O'Connor; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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