Explained: How will football adapt as COVID-19 cases rise?

December has brought what English football had always feared in the age of COVID-19. A total of 31 games across the top four divisions have been postponed this month, almost double the amount of fixtures called off previously this season — and there’s still time for that figure to rise yet.

English football’s top-flight successfully avoided calling off any fixtures until the first week of December, when Newcastle United were unable to fulfil a trip to Aston Villa due to an outbreak within their squad. But then Manchester City’s Premier League game at Everton was postponed on Monday night while in League One, the division currently worst affected, seven games were postponed in what was 2020’s final round on Tuesday.

Games postponed due to COVID-19 in 2020-21

Problems are mounting for both the Premier League and EFL as the landscape begins to look increasingly challenging up and down the UK. An already congested calendar…

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