Brighton chief executive Paul Barber isn’t too supportive of the neutral venue plan that the Premier League has decided to go with.
The plan which was decided on Friday is that, in an effort to finish the 2019-20 season, neutral venues shall be picked for holding the remaining matches. However, the Brighton chief officer argues that the new venues might not be comfortable for teams to play in, in comparison to a full stadium of their fans cheering them on.
“Clearly, we must all be prepared to accept some compromises, and we fully appreciate why playing behind closed doors is very likely to be a necessary compromise to play our remaining games while continuing to fully support the government’s efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus,” he said on the club’s website.
“But at this critical point in the season playing matches in neutral venues has, in our view, potential to have a material effect on the integrity of the competition.”
“The disadvantages of us not playing the league’s top teams in our home stadium and in familiar surroundings, even with 27,000 Albion fans very unlikely to be present at the Amex, are very obvious,” Barber said.
“Clearly, we must accept there may also be some benefit from playing our remaining four away matches at neutral venues but the fixture list simply isn’t equally balanced at this stage of the season, and we didn’t play our first 29 matches of the season in this way. So, in our opinion one thing doesn’t cancel out the other.”