Restarting football too early would be “irresponsible”, says FIFA president Gianni Infantino. Most domestic leagues around the world are on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic while major tournaments such as Euro 2020 and the Copa America have been postponed for one year. “No match, no competition, no league is worth risking a single human life,” Infantino said. “It’s better to wait a little bit longer than to take risks.” Football is continuing in a handful of countries, including Belarus, Burundi, Nicaragua and Tajikistan.
Infantino, head of football’s world governing body, insisted that safety should come first. “I cannot stress this enough,” he told FIFA’s 211 member associations on Friday. “Our first priority, our principle, the one we will use for our competitions and encourage everyone to follow, is that health comes first. “Everyone in the world should have this very clear in their mind.” Discussions are being held around the world over when and how to restart the season. In addition, in some countries there are disagreements over whether players should face pay cuts. “It would be more than irresponsible to force competitions to resume if things are not 100% safe,” said Infantino. “If football manages to have a discussion where everyone contributes positively, and keeps in mind the global interest over the individual one, I am convinced our future can be better than our past, and we will be better prepared for the times ahead.”