Championship season to resume 20 June

The EFL have announced tonight that the Championship season will resume on Saturday 20 June.

Football in England has been suspended since 13 March due to the COVID-19 pandemic but it was confirmed last week that the Premier League will be back in action from Wednesday 17 June.

In a statement from the EFL they said the date was “provisional” and subject to “the strict proviso that all safety requirements and government guidance is met”.

There are 113 games still to be played, including the play-off semi-finals and final. In comparison, the Premier League has 92 fixtures remaining.

The EFL are aiming to complete the Championship season with the play-off final “on or around 30 July”.

The UK government gave the green light for competitive sports to return behind closed doors from tomorrow, Monday 1 June.

Snooker and horse racing are set to return as early as tomorrow whilst darts has been able to continue throughout lockdown. During this time, the World Championships of Poker have continued virtually.

Players of Championship sides were able to return to training on Monday 25 May whilst full contact training can begin this week. In all, that gives the second tier clubs just four weeks to get prepared for competitive football, compared to five weeks that Premier League clubs have been allocated.

There have been three rounds of coronavirus testing conducted in the Championship to date with the 24 clubs combining for more than 1,000 tests each time.

Two people at Hull City have tested positive, two unnamed Fulham players and Blackburn Rovers captain Elliott Bennett all tested positive in the first two rounds. There were then 10 positive tests across eight Championship sides in the third round, including Preston North End striker Jayden Stockley.

When the season resumes Leeds United will be top of the table, one point ahead of West Bromwich Albion, who have a six point lead over Fulham in third, each wth nine games remaining.

Barnsley, Luton Town and Charlton Athletic make up the relegation zone.