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Football in England could resume as early as June 6, with the English Football League (EFL) close to finalizing the Championship's return to the pitch, sources told Mark Ogden of ESPN.
While the Premier League remains locked in talks with its clubs and UK health officials over the feasibility of "Project Restart," the Championship is apparently further along in its plan to restart matches. The EFL is "confident" the second tier can restart on the first weekend of June, Ogden added.
League 1 and League 2 - the third and fourth tiers of the English game - are expected to be canceled, with only the promotion playoffs taking place, according to Ogden.
But there's optimism that the Championship, which has been suspended since March 13, can be completed in full. All of the league's 24 teams have nine matches left on the calendar. That means 108 games still need to be played, in addition to the end-of-season promotion playoffs.
Any potential resumption needs to be preceded by a return to team training, something the EFL said "should not take place until May 25 at the earliest."
Leeds United currently sit top of the table, with second-place West Bromwich Albion holding the other automatic promotion place. Fulham, Brentford, Nottingham Forest, and Preston North End occupy the four playoff positions.