SINGAPORE — Football matches across Britain last weekend were postponed following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II at the age of 96 last Thursday (8 September).
While there were debates on whether the matches should have gone on for fans to pay tribute to the queen, the general consensus was that the professional football leagues - such as the English Premier League (EPL) - could afford to put off their games and schedule them at a later date.
However, the Premier League announced on Monday that there will be further postponements to EPL matches this coming weekend. Three matches - Liverpool vs Chelsea, Manchester United vs Leeds and Brighton vs Crystal Palace - were called off on safety grounds while authorities make preparations for the funeral of the queen next Monday.
The move was again met with debate and disapproval, as clubs worry about the fixtures piling up amid an already-crammed EPL season which will be paused for the FIFA World Cup Finals in November and December.
Columnist Neil Humphreys pointed out the ludicrous situation of this fixture logjam during Yahoo News Singapore's "Footballing Weekly" show, saying that there are no more available slots to fit in the postponed matches until the end of the year.
"There are only three slots currently available and even they are not entirely free. This they're there to allow those in the latter stages of the Carabao Cup or the FA Cup to rearrange league fixtures. And that doesn't even take into account Champions League," he said.
"It's ridiculous for a club like Liverpool, who will play only one Premier League match this month, and have a massive fixture jam when the season resumes after the World Cup if they are still involved in the Carabao Cup, FA Cup and Champions League.
"Please, no more cancellations. Pay your respects to the queen at the game with a minute's silence, and trust football fans to do the right thing."
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