Paul Barber updates on Project Restart

Albion's chief executive talks in detail about plans to finish the season.

By Bruce Talbot • 05 May 2020

By Paul Hazlewood
Albion chief executive Paul Barber.

Chief Executive Paul Barber gave a wide-ranging 30-minute interview on BBC Five Live’s 'Monday Night Club' when he talked in detail about Project Restart, the Premier League’s plan to finish the season.

Among the topics he discussed were: 

  • Premier League clubs are agreed on finishing the season in its entirety if it is safe to do so.
  • Plans to re-start training, with smaller groups initially before building up, are not yet finalised. Players have to be reassured that the environment to train and play is safe.
  • Clubs and players do not want to appear insensitive about playing when nearly 30,000 people have died from Covid-19 in the UK.
  • Albion have accepted that they won’t play games with fans in the stadium if the season is completed.
  • Albion are opposed to playing at neutral venues because it damages the fairness of the competition.
  • At this stage of the season, all clubs in the league are self-interested to greater or lesser degrees.
  • The removal of relegation has not been discussed at any Premier League shareholders’ meeting.
  • Albion would trust football fans not to turn up at stadiums where their team are playing behind closed doors if asked not to do so.
  • Clubs want to protect tens of thousands of jobs in the Premier League industry, but this is more difficult without income generated from playing matches.
  • Albion contribute £200m each year to the local economy so it’s important to play on because that money gets re-circulated across the city and Sussex and jobs depend on it.
  • Albion, like many clubs, are playing a central role in supporting its community through the crisis.
  • Regular, open, transparent communication to all the club’s stakeholders remains a priority.

To hear the full interview click here