PSG set 'to be crowned champions of Ligue 1'
General view of the main entrance of the Parc de Princes stadium a day before the Champions League match between Paris Saint-Germain and Borussia Dortmund, which was played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus outbreak, in Paris, France March 10, 2020. [REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes/File Photo]

PSG are set to be crowned French champions following the decision to cancel the remainder of the season due to coronavirus.

The French authorities banned all sporting events from taking place in the country until at least September, forcing the football season into an early conclusion.

That saw Ligue 1 chiefs forced to scramble into action to decide how best to end the campaign, with UEFA having all but ended any chance of seasons being voided, with their declaration that any European qualifiers next year must be decided on “sporting merit”, based on the current campaign.

Last week saw Holland resolve their season, with no champions named – Ajax and AZ Alkmaar were level on points – and no relegation.

Now L’Equipe report that PSG have been awarded the title for the 2019/20 campaign, despite having 11 games remaining.

PSG have won the title in six of the last seven seasons, and were twelve points clear of second place Marseille this season, also with a game in hand.

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Nimes, Amiens and Toulouse all sit inside the bottom three, though the gap between those outside the relegation zone is just three points.

Qualification for next season’s European competitions is also set to be determined.

Based on the current table, Rennes and Lille would qualify for the Champions League, along with Marseille, while Reims and Nice occupy the Europa League places.

However, it is uncertain how the remaining European spots will be dished out – especially with the Coupe de la Ligue and French Cup finals still to be played, potentially taking places away from the league – and the relegation outcome.

PSG are still involved in this season’s Champions League, and chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi insists his team will still be taking part, even if it means playing abroad.

“We respect of course the French government decision – we plan on competing in the Champions League with Uefa agreement – wherever and whenever it is held.

“If it is not possible to play in France we will play our matches abroad subject to the best conditions for our players and the safety of all our staff.”

The news of PSG’s coronation will be taken favourably by Liverpool fans, who are waiting to see how the Premier League season will be concluded.

Liverpool’s gap over second-placed rivals Man City is more than double PSG’s lead, at 25 points, and with less games still to play.

The decision by French chiefs hands the Premier League a precedent that they can indeed follow, if the English top flight is unable to return.

 

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