Culture secretary Oliver Dowden has opened the door for Leeds United to complete their bid to win promotion to the Premier League by playing their final nine matches.
Leeds have been one of the most vocal clubs in the Championship about playing out the rest of the season so they can win promotion from the Championship on the pitch.
Before football was suspended in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Whites were on a five-match winning streak that put them top of the table, seven points clear of third and with just nine matches left to play.
As reported by The Athletic journalist Phil Hay, “Leeds are one of the more vocal clubs” in trying to complete all remaining fixtures despite plans for the season to be decided on a points-per-game model.
And although some may be happy for promotion to be handed to them, Dowden’s latest comments show that the government is happy for matches to be played once it is safe to do so and the EFL have come up with a plan.
“We all agreed that we will only go ahead if it is safe to do so and the health and welfare of players, coaches and staff comes first,” the Hertsmere MP said, as quoted by BBC Sport.
“It is now up to the football authorities to agree and finalise the detail of their plans, and there is combined goodwill to achieve this for their fans, the football community and the nation as a whole.
“The government and our medical experts will continue to offer guidance and support.”
If Leeds can get the outcome they want out of this then that is great but we believe that health and safety has to come first and if they want to end the season now and award United promotion, then so be it.
It would be anticlimactic to say the least but it is a lot better than declaring the whole season null and void.
At least if Leeds are awarded promotion via the PPG model then the club can get a head start with planning for life in the Premier League.
In other Leeds United news, Angus Kinnear has responded to fans who do not want to refund their tickets.