The Premier League have changed the rules that allow a game to be called off, with the Mail citing the Arsenal game against Tottenham as the main reason.

Mail on Sunday
Mail on Sunday

I don’t know about you, but I remember this time pretty clearly.

Every team in the league was asking to have games postponed and, then, when Arsenal asked to have the Tottenham game move, all hell broke lose.

Suddenly, Arsenal were making a farce of things by following rules that all clubs had agreed to and most had taken advantage of.

Something must be done! Cried the pundits, often saying it had nothing to do with Arsenal when it clearly did.

Within weeks, the Premier League said they would not be changing the rules because of this issue.

That has now changed.

Premier League tightens rules over match postponements for player unavailability - after January's north London derby fiasco - with games only being called off next season in 'truly exceptional' circumstances
Daily Mail, 16 June 2022

From the start of next season, clubs will need to prove they have ‘taken all reasonable steps’ to mitigate any issues before any games can be rearranged.

For those thinking this doesn’t really have much to do with Arsenal (because it actually doesn’t), the Mail Online write, “The league has revised its guidance after a number of matches were postponed last term as coronavirus cases and isolation rules exacerbated other factors such as injury, suspension and international calls.

“The most notable postponement due to last season’s guidance was January’s north London derby being postponed due to unavailabilities [sic] in the Arsenal squad.

“Tottenham stated they were ‘extremely surprised’ by the Premier League’s decision to call off the match, saying it wasn’t fair due to absences ‘unrelated to Covid.'”

A Premier League statement read: ‘Club requests to the Premier League board will continue to be considered on their facts and assessed on a case-by-case basis.

‘Approval will only be granted where the impact of player unavailability on a club’s squad is truly exceptional and where the club concerned has taken all reasonable steps to avoid the necessity to make the application.

‘The detail within all applications will continue to be scrutinised by the league’s specialist staff before the board makes its decision.

‘The league’s postponement rules and guidance are designed to protect the wellbeing of players and staff, while maintaining the sporting integrity of the competition and the quality of squads playing league matches.’