Premier League’s bottom three clubs Norwich, Aston Villa and Bournemouth have been warned that relegation could be imposed on them if they continue to block plans to resume the season next month at a neutral stadium amid the Coronavirus pandemic according to a Thursday report by Daily Mail.
Premier league clubs are eager to return to action pending agreement with the British Government and have titled the planned premier league return pencilled for next month ”’Project Restart’ .
Norwich, Aston Villa and Bournemouth have been blocking attempts for the league to start in neutral venues saying it’ll hurt them in the relegation fight if they play without their fans but have been warned that if there isn’t unanimous support for Project Restart at a shareholders’ meeting on Monday. The implicit threat is that the majority will vote to send the bottom three on relegation.
The clubs were told according to a report by Daily Mail that their best chance of staying up is to vote to restart the season and win games to get out of trouble.
The current bottom three had not been the most vocal in raising objections to Project Restart.
Brighton, West Ham and Watford have argued they have most to lose from a resumption, given they are just above the relegation zone.
Villa chief executive Christian Purslow on Wednesday joined Brighton’s Paul Barber in outlining his opposition to the remaining matches being played at neutral venues, which is the Premier League’s proposal based on advice from the Government and police.
‘Personally I am against it,’ Purslow said. ‘We are a club that prides itself on home form.
‘Two-thirds of our wins this season came at home. We have six left. Giving up that advantage is a massive decision and I wouldn’t agree to it unless the circumstances are right. My duty is to my club.’
The Premier League require 14 clubs to vote in favour to pass a motion. The support of the bottom three would be enough to ensure Project Restart occurs.
According to the Daily mail, ”Premier League chiefs fear that a split vote next week could leave them open to public criticism, especially if a player tests positive for coronavirus at a club who voted against the restart and they are lobbying the rebels in hope of securing a unanimous vote to avoid that.”