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MLS teams could face forfeiting playoff games if COVID-19 outbreaks occur

Major League Soccer (MLS) teams could be forced into forfeiting their matches in the MLS Cup playoff fixtures if the team suffers from outbreaks of COVID-19.

Reportedly, the league will make attempts to reschedule games in cases where teams suffer from an outbreak of coronavirus during the playoff period, furthering the detrimental effect that the virus continues to have on the sporting world.

However, it is feared that with a strict timeframe to complete the league’s postseason, any team with an outbreak may have their hand forced into forfeiting the fixture, making way for the rival team to advance.

In the instance that both teams suffer a significant outbreak of the virus, the side with the higher points-per-game average during the regular season will advance through to the next round, according to ESPN.

It was unknown how the MLS were going to approach the playoffs, with some expecting the bubble format to be applied. Nonetheless, the league opted against this despite suffering from coronavirus issues prior to the MLS Is Back Tournament that took place over the summer in Orlando, Florida.

The 2021 MLS season is set to kick-off in early March, according to MLS president and deputy commissioner Mark Abbott, after a report from the Sports Business Journal claimed that an April start date had been pencilled in due to the pandemic.

Author: Jake Wilkin