Culture secretary confirms working on return to action next month

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has given us an update on the latest plans to return to action, with a vote expected today on whether clubs can return to training.

Arsenal haven’t played a minutes football since beating West Ham 1-0 at the Emirates on March 7, but should the latest plans come to fruition, we could be back in action in around 3-4 weeks time.

Our side has 10 matches remaining of the current league campaign, as well as an FA Cup quarter final with Sheffield United to look forward to should a safe passage to complete matches be agreed upon.

Oliver Dowden has confirmed that the clubs and the government are working closely together, and that talks on Thursday had gone well.

“I had some very constructive discussions on Thursday with the FA, the EFL and the Premier League,” said Dowden.

“We are working hard with them to try and get it back, aiming for mid-June, but the number one test if public safety.

“They, like a lot of other sports we’re looking at returning behind closed doors, have met with Public Health England several times to look at the safety.

“If we can sort that out then we will look to resume by mid-June. We’re making good progress.”

The Culture Secretary added that he was also working on agreeing a deal that would allow some of the remaining matches to be aired on terrestrial TV, in hope of reducing the want for fans to leave their homes on matchdays.

He said: “As part of that I’m hoping we can have something a bit more ambitious with some more free-to-air matches for people to watch from home because that would be helpful in terms of discouraging people from leaving their home to watch it.

“There are various options. It wouldn’t all be free to air, but for example there is a rule at the moment that at 3pm you can’t show matches on TV because people were watching it in the football stadiums.

“Clearly that’s not going to be the case any more so some of those slots may be available for free to air so we’re looking to see whether we could do that as part of the wider broadcast package.

“It wouldn’t be all of it because a lot of these already have the rights sold.”

I’m not going to lie, a return to action would definitely boost my morale, but there appears to be a growing list of players who are against the idea of a return currently, and while we don’t expect the clubs vote against a return to training, it could well cause issues at some clubs.

Do we expect any Arsenal stars to refuse to return to training?


Tags Premier League return


  1. Robert Acedius says:

    No Mustafi! No Xhaka! Asn’l will never RETURN to the top of the table as long as these losers are in the squad. Even if they are just “backbenchers” they will ruin every ambition for EPL and CL. Please, senior Arteta. During the season 2019/20 you had to stick to them, they were something the cat dragged in, but if they are still there when the next season start there is no excuse. A bad decision in this matter will follow for the rest of your career. Be ruthless, man!

    1. jon fox says:

      If only it were that simple to get rid of dross Robert. I reckon almost all Gooners would like to be rid of many of our players draining our clubs resources, in my case at least ten, including LACA after his latest revelations, though he was already on the edge of my list anyway, even prior to this latest hippy crack betrayal.

      The problem is who on earth will be willing to BUY -at least for any REAL money- these unproductive players and pay them the wages they ridiculously expect. THAT is the problem ANY manager at ANY club has for some time to come in trying to remove deadwood.

      Simple reality is that MA cannot and should not be expected to be a miracle worker. Not by reasonable fans at least. Wouldn’t you agree? “Ruthlessness” needs to be tinged with well thought through reality, I suggest to you!

      1. Robert Acedius says:

        Of course you’re right, Jon. But just reading about Mustafi working hard to get a new contract (that’s why he licked someones a*s, calling him “professor”) – make me sick. And Xhaka make me even more sick. Signing him was Monsieur Wenger’s worst crime. Then over to the balloon man, how embarrassing. A true Birdbrain, wouldn’t you say? Who do he think he is? Phileas Fogg? He should just be fired! No discussion.

  2. Richard odiyo says:

    if arsenal loose is stars like auba,laca,xhaka,ozil,mustafi,our team arsenal Will end in a bad position this year.we as ars funs we are requesting our boss to talk with them and add them new contract.if they agree with it.

    1. Robert Acedius says:

      I wouldn’t use the metaphor “star” for guys like Mustafi and Xhaka. They are not shining at all. Doing mistake after mistake on a football pitch is not making a player shine. Mesut Ozil can be called an “extinct” star, maybe. But that doesn’t make him more funny to watch for a depressed gooner. The only player of those you named who deserve the metaphor “star” is Aubameyang.

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