Zurich:The FIFA Working Group on the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic issued recommendations for the Bureau of the FIFA Council saying that all men's and women's international matches scheduled for June should be postponed over the spread of the coronavirus.
The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) has already delayed the international football matches in Europe over the pandemic.
"Concerning the men's international match calendar: the Working Group advises to postpone all international matches due to be played during the upcoming June 2020 window; and to organize bilateral discussions with confederations concerning 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers in order to finalize a revised match schedule pending health and safety developments," FIFA said in a statement on Friday.Similar recommendations were issued concerning women's international matches.
"Concerning the women's international match calendar: [the Working Group advises] to postpone all international matches due to be played during the upcoming June 2020 window; to include the new dates of the Women's Olympic Football Tournament in the women's international match calendar; and to create a sub-working group on the women's international match calendar to consider potential changes to the calendar and dates of postponed FIFA final tournaments," FIFA said.
The group also recommended the postponement of the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup Panama/Costa Rica 2020 and the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup India 2020, which were scheduled for August-September and November, respectively.FIFA also reiterated that health must always be the first priority and the main criteria in any decision-making process, especially in these challenging times.
The World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic on March 11.To date, more than 1 million people have been infected with the coronavirus worldwide, with over 58,000 fatalities, according to Johns Hopkins University.(UNI)