May 22, 2020 / 3:46 PM / 9 days ago

Soccer-Slovakia's top-tier league may resume on June 13

BRATISLAVA, May 22 (Reuters) - Slovakia’s top-tier soccer league will resume on June 13 in a shortened format of five rounds of championship and relegation groups if state authorities approve proposed conditions, the Union of League Clubs (ULK) said on Friday.

The competition was halted in early March after 22 games of the regular season when the government banned all sporting events as it aimed to curb the new coronavirus outbreak.

“I would like to thank clubs that they had fans in mind in these difficult times,” the president of ULK Ivan Kozak said.

The rules for hygiene proposed by the union have yet to be approved by the country’s top public health official. All players and selected team members will be tested, Kozak said.

Holders Slovan Bratislava have a 10-point lead over Zilina, which went into liquidation in March but will be able to finish the competition as its financial situation does not affect its sporting activities.

Germany’s Bundesliga was Europe’s first major league to restart on May 16. Slovakia’s neighbouring Czechs will resume top-flight soccer on May 23.

Slovakia has lifted most anti-coronavirus restrictions, but competitive sports will not be allowed before June 3. The country had recorded 1,503 cases and 28 deaths as of Thursday. (Reporting by Tomas Mrva; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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