MLS has extended the suspension of its season to May 10 due to the coronavirus outbreak, the league announced on Thursday.
In accordance with guidelines from the U.S Center for Disease Control and Prevention, which currently ban all gatherings of 50 people or more for the next eight weeks, the league confirmed that it is extending the suspension of its season.
MLS had previously announced that the season was suspended through March 30, but in light of the updated guidance from the CDC, a revised, later return date was determined to be needed. On Wednesday, the lower tier USL announced that it was suspending its season through May 10.
“MLS remains focused on playing the entire 2020 season and is evaluating all options, including pushing back the end of the season and playing MLS Cup in December, as the league did prior to the 2019 season. The league is also identifying other available dates,” the league said in a statement.
“Throughout this process, MLS will continue to prioritize the safety of our fans, players, employees and partners and to coordinate with federal and local public health authorities as well as other sporting organizations.”
MLS said that at this point, it is still planning to play its entire slate of games, meaning no matches have been canceled as of yet. The latest extension may require pushing MLS Cup — currently scheduled for early November — into December, but the league “is evaluating all options” and also “identifying other available dates” for when the match can be held. MLS had previously held the match in December from 2012-18.
At present, MLS teams are prevented from training through Friday, March 20, but there was no update at this time on if the moratorium might be extended.