La Liga Announces Clearance to Resume Season After June 8 Amid COVID-19

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistMay 23, 2020

Real Madrid's Sergio Ramos celebrates as he runs past Barcelona's Lionel Messi during the Spanish La Liga soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, March 1, 2020. (AP Photo/Andrea Comas)
Andrea Comas/Associated Press

La Liga announced Saturday that it has been given clearance to resume the season as soon as June 8.

Per the league's official announcement, the Spanish government gave the go-ahead to resume play following guidelines from the Ministry of Health. 

Per ESPN's Samuel Marsden, the "likely" return date for La Liga will be June 12 or 19, with an official confirmation from president Javier Tebas potentially coming on Sunday. 

La Liga suspended play on March 12, at the time announcing the hiatus would last for a minimum of two weeks. That decision came after Real Madrid chose to self-isolate after a member of the club's basketball team tested positive for COVID-19.

On March 23, the league announced it was postponed indefinitely and wouldn't resume play until it was given clearance by the Spanish government. 

La Liga wasn't alone. A number of prominent leagues around the globe, including the NBA, NHL, Premier League, Bundesliga and Serie A, among others, all suspended their seasons. In the United States, the NCAA canceled the men's and women's college basketball tournaments, while the IOC chose to postpone the 2020 Summer Olympics.

And UEFA postponed the European Championship for an entire year, while both the Champions League and Europa League were halted as well. 

That called into question whether certain leagues would continue playing at all this season, including La Liga, and how those leagues would handle the remainder of the schedule.

Ligue 1 in France and the Eredivisie in the Netherlands canceled their seasons, but the Bundesliga returned to action behind closed doors on May 16.

With La Liga instituting testing for players in early May and the Spanish government giving the league clearance to return, however, games will resume in a welcome piece of news for football fans. 

When league play does continue, a tight title race will resume as well, with Barcelona (58 points) holding a two-point advantage over Real Madrid at the top of the table.