It looks as though football fans could be without English top flight football for a while, with the news being announced earlier today that this weekend's Premier League fixtures have been postponed after the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
It was expected that this would be the case, with the Premier League confirming just before midday that the games would not go ahead 'as a mark of respect'.
As a mark of respect to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, this weekend’s Premier League match round will be postponed.
— Premier League (@premierleague) September 9, 2022
The statement also suggests that a decision on next week's fixtures will be made in due course, with many expecting that the division will go two weekends without playing any games. When you combine this with the upcoming international break, it means that teams will go almost a month without playing a domestic fixture.
That seems like absolute madness, especially in a season when there are few slots available to reschedule games due to the winter World Cup in Qatar.
Peter Crouch & Gary Neville question Premier League postponement
Even apart from logistical concerns down the line, the decision to postpone football games at all levels in the UK is an odd one.
Other sports such as rugby, golf, cricket, and horse racing are set to continue tomorrow as planned after some had postponed scheduled action today in the aftermath of the monarch's death.
Peter Crouch and Gary Neville were just two of the big names that questioned the wisdom behind calling off the games.
I know it’s only a game and some things are much bigger but imagine all our games went ahead this weekend.
Black armbands, silences observed, national anthem, Royal band playing etc to the millions around the world watching ?
Isn’t that a better send off ?
— Peter Crouch (@petercrouch) September 9, 2022
I agree Piers. Sport can demonstrate better than most the respect the Queen deserves . https://t.co/oYKTkEaUP0
— Gary Neville (@GNev2) September 9, 2022
It is also worth pointing out that football was not suspended after the most recent death of the ruling British monarch, which was when King George VI died back in 1952.
It has been suggested that European fixtures involving British clubs during the days ahead will proceed as planned, perhaps further hammering home questions around Premier League games continuing, especially after this weekend.
Players and managers will certainly have concerns about fitting in two more games further down the line.
It will be interesting to see what approach the Premier League will take.