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French Football League Has Been Cancelled

The 2019-20 Ligue 1 season has been abandoned after the French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe's announcement that no sporting events will be allowed to take place until September.

Philippe has confirmed that there is no possibility of Ligue 1 resuming until September amid the ongoing fight against coronavirus, with France still in a state of lockdown.

“The big sporting affairs cannot occur before September,” he said in a national assembly on Tuesday. “The 2019-20 professional football season cannot return.”

The French professional league (LFP)  announced plans to restart the campaign on June 17 last week, and UEFA has set a deadline of August 2 for domestic leagues to reach their natural conclusions.

Philippe's comments have ended all hopes of a return to action for French clubs over the summer, with Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 now indefinitely cancelled.

The governing bodies of French football are due to meet in May to discuss the final league standings, with it yet to be determined who will be crowned champions, who will be relegated and who will win promotion.

PSG look set to be crowned Ligue 1 champions for a third successive year, having opened up a 12-point lead over Marseille at the top of the table.

Marseille and Rennes currently occupy the final Champions League spots, while Lille are set to secure a place in the Europa League.

It has been reported that the LFP is unwilling to consider declaring the season null and void, meaning Nimes, Amiens and Toulouse are all now facing relegation from the French top flight.

Toulouse were 17 points from safety before the coronavirus-enforced break and Amiens also looked doomed, but Nimes were only three points adrift of 17th-placed Saint-etienne.

However, in Ligue 2, Lorient and Lens occupy the automatic promotion spots, but there are only four points between the league leaders and fifth-placed Clermont.

Jean-Paul Delgraissy, president of the French scientific council on the coronavirus pandemic, has expressed his belief that it will not be safe for football to resume for the foreseeable future.

"The answer for the moment is no, since all the places where there can be a significant public will not be open from May 11," he said. 

"We give ourselves a few weeks. We are watching what is happening."


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