Liverpool should receive the Premier League title if the season cannot be completed due to the coronavirus pandemic, says Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan.
Jurgen Klopp’s men were two tantalizing victories away from winning the first crown since 1990, when the season was suspended earlier this month.
The stoppage is expected to last until April 30. Premier League bosses are expected to meet on Friday, with no indication of when football will resume.
Gundogan, whose team is behind Liverpool by 25 points, told German broadcaster ZDF that if the season could not end, Klopp’s team deserved the title.
“It would be good for me,” he said. “As a sportsman, you need to be fair.”
The 29-year-old German international, who has won the Premier League title with City for the past two seasons, said it is unlikely that he and his colleagues could resume training in late April.
“Honestly, I can’t imagine (this is happening) and I also don’t know how realistic it is,” he said.
Figures on Sunday revealed that 1,228 people with coronaviruses died in Britain. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is among the more than 19,500 people who tested positive for COVID-19.
The chairman of the European football governing body, UEFA, said on Saturday that the 2019/20 league could be “lost” if it could not be continued by the end of June.
Gundogan admitted that Premier League bosses faced a difficult choice.
“There are different opinions,” he said. “For clubs that have had a very good season, it obviously wouldn’t be good if it were canceled now.
“On the other hand, for clubs that are not doing so well and maybe are in the relegation places, an abandonment would obviously be appropriate for them.”
The cancellation would affect the second division English Premier League, with Leeds United and West Brom occupying both places for automatic promotion.
Gundogan said he would be willing to take a cut if English clubs follow the example of Serie A leader Juventus and his former club, Borussia Dortmund.
“Of course, I think everything is fine, this is obvious – (but) there has not yet been an argument in England,” he said.