How the coronavirus outbreak could impact Sheffield Wednesday's summer transfer plans

The Premier League and EFL have confirmed that fixtures will be suspended until the first weekend of April.

Friday, 13th March 2020, 11:58 am
Updated Friday, 13th March 2020, 11:58 am
Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)

COVID-19 has heavily impacted leagues in Europe and around the globe with Spain, Italy and the USA all postponing their matches until at least the end of March.

And with Champions League and Europa League games either postponed or played behind closed doors this week, UEFA senior officials will meet on Tuesday ahead of a decision on those competitions and Euro 2020, which is due to take place this summer.

Indeed, further decisions from those governing bodies could impact the summer transfer window - and we take a look at how clubs could be affected:

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TIME FRAME

If fixtures are to be postponed, that could mean that the leagues go on longer, which will either mean less time for clubs to get their business done once a season is finished, or that the FA in each country may change the transfer deadline from August 31 to allow clubs more time.

SCOUTING

It is very common for Premier League and Championship clubs to send scouts to watch matches in the United Kingdom and worldwide.

The rapid increase in countries shutting their football grounds to the public will prevent scouts from casting an eye over any potential targets.

In terms of travelling to Europe or other parts of the world, this could limit the amount of foreign talent gracing the English leagues.

Similarly, it could work in the opposite direction with clubs struggling to offload any players they may want to in order to raise funds etc.

TRAVEL

Scouting and travel tend to fall into the same bracket but it can differentiate to some extent.

Quite often, planning a scouting trip comes months in advance but as the coronavirus has shown, it can escalate very quickly.

Naturally, this means any hard planning towards watching potential targets could go out the window.

Additionally, if a club was confident enough on signing a player without making checks in person, the next stage is to finalise the transfer.

Any problems surrounding travel would make it difficult for the player, agent and club to meet in person and ultimately thrash out negotiations to seal a deal.

Even if talks were to take place over a video call, could there then be a problem of actually getting the player etc in the country?

TRANSFER FEES

If clubs have difficulties travelling, scouting and having to rely on video analysis, will we see usually big fees being floated about?

Indeed, this could force clubs to reconsider their transfer strategy and perhaps solely target players in the UK.

Prices could then inflate with clubs battling for the same players coupled with the fact clubs might not want to sell to domestic rivals.

Of course, these things are purely speculative, though it does prove those involved in football could be in for an interesting summer.