There is widespread disbelief today following the release of the Premier League 2020/21 fixture list which confirmed that each of the top division’s 20 sides are expected to play 38 games in the coming season.
In news that must be a sensational turn of events given how big a deal Sky Sports News are making of it, the top-flight clubs have once again agreed to play each other both home and away to determine the champions of England in 2021.
The fixtures for the 2020/21 @PremierLeague season have been released! ?
Check out when and who your Premier League club will be facing when the new season starts here ?
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 20, 2020
Any lingering doubts that the league would dispense with playing games and leave Liverpool as champions in perpetuity were dismissed by the news that, just as they have for over 20 years, the league winner will be decided by 38 games for each side.
And fans have been going wild about the news on social media.
“Can’t believe we have to play our biggest rival TWICE this season. TWICE!!!11!!1,” ranted @GenericMcPLainFan on twitter, in a sentiment that was mirrored by hundreds of thousands of other fans of Premier League football teams when the fixture list was released.
While @AveRageJoe remarked that “2 sides from the top 4 playing at some point in 2021. That could be a big game!”
However, not everyone was so excited about the news.
“NIGHTMARE! 38 games to defend the Premier League. Never saw that coming,” @RedLa4Eva1993 moaned, before suggesting that “Fergie is pulling the strings at the Premier League” to “knock Liverpool back off their perch” with this plot to play another full season.
Though @marchonLUFC chimed in that “if you think 38 games is a shock, you should see what they do in the championship m8.”
And @ManUDevil99 said “38 more games for Ole to get the experience he needs to eventually become a Championship-quality manager. Bring it on #Olesatthewheel”
Meanwhile, your Liverpool supporting mate on Facebook had a busy morning predicting the likely 2020/21 league table once the fixtures are played out.
“Reckon we should be expecting to get about 114 points next season,” he said having scanned the club’s fixtures for approximately 30 seconds when they were released at 9am.
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“Why not? City might give us a game at the Etihad, but Pep’ll probably put De Bruyne in goal for it and we’ll nick a winner when he’s up taking a corner.”
The fixture release also confirmed each team’s home and away fixtures for fans who are deluded enough to start planning to travel to games as if supporters will be back in stadiums any time soon.
Elsewhere, broadcasters have already started moving your team’s fixtures around so much that their actual schedule of games will bear little resemblance to the list released this morning, and also to ensure you can definitely forget those pre-match pints whenever supporters are allowed back.