West Ham United could be saved from relegation due to Roy Hodgson.
The world has been gripped by the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and football is not immune.
West Ham were embroiled in an intense battle against relegation before all football has shut down until April 4th – a date which is likely to be pushed back significantly.
That has prompted speculation about what could – and should – be done about the remainder of the current campaign.
Brady declared season should be ‘null and void’
West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady told The Sun the season should be null and void.
The West Ham CEO was savaged for her comments, but figures from polls show vast numbers of fans agree with her.
Others think the season should be completed first regardless when that might be with next season delayed until a later date.
But new government advice for those over 70 to be isolated for the next three months means West Ham might be safe due to the Roy Hodgson issue.
Palace boss Hodgson facing three-month isolation
Under the guidelines, 72-year-old Crystal Palace manager Hodgson would be required to do just that.
And that would make it impossible to conclude the season fairly.
While Palace were considered more or less safe before the break, they were not mathematically so.
Indeed they even had an outside chance of Europe. For them to be forced to play without their manager would be unfathomable.
West Ham do not have to play Palace in their last nine games.
But they do face their relegation rivals Bournemouth and Aston Villa.
Hodgson issue would make Premier League restart difficult if not impossible
The authorities have made clear that clubs having their players and staff available – and therefore not be directly disadvantaged by the virus – is crucial to the integrity of the sport.
That would surely render the season null and void, thus keeping West Ham up by default.
Clearly there are greater issues at large to worry about.
But from a sporting perspective, the quarantine for over 70s is an issue which the Premier League will not be able to ignore.