Paris Saint-Germain crowned Ligue 1 champions after French season called off

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PSG have won their seventh league title in eight years. PHOTO/COURTESY

By Sky Sports for Lolwe digital

Paris Saint-Germain have been awarded the Ligue 1 title after the season was ended amid the coronavirus pandemic.

PSG, who have now won their seventh French title in the last eight years, held a 12-point lead over second-placed Marseille when the season was suspended in March.

The French Professional Football League(LFP) ratified the decision at a meeting on Thursday, two days after French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe suspended sport in the country until at least September.

A points-per-game system, taking into account the performance of clubs in the matches already played, was used to determine the final standings in the Ligue 1 table.

Marseille have qualified directly for the Champions League while third-place Rennes will enter the qualifying rounds, with Toulouse and Amiens relegated.

Lyon & Amiens to consider legal action

Seventh-placed Olympique Lyonnais, who have missed out on a European place, said they would possibly appeal against the LFP’s decision to end the season.

Lyon were just one point behind 6th-placed Nice, who have qualified for the Europa League, with 10 matches to play.

“Olympique Lyonnais reserves the right to appeal against that decision and claim damages, in particular in respect of loss of opportunity and in the light of the case-law of other professional sports which is currently under way, since the damage to the club amounts to several tens of millions of euros,” they said in a statement.

“We proposed as early as Tuesday that the league study an alternative solution that would allow the championship to end and thus preserve the fairness inherent in any sporting competition and be in line with UEFA’s proposals based on sporting merit according to objective, transparent and non-discriminatory principles.

“This solution, shared by other clubs, was based on the principle of play-offs and play-downs, a championship title acquired by PSG, with a calendar limited to three weeks consistent with health constraints, and an innovative formula that could normally have interested broadcasters, currently short of content, as well as sports betting and all the other economic players in the football sector.”

Amiens, who were four points behind 18th-placed Nimes, revealed they would further analyse the reasoning behind the decision reached by the LFP before deciding whether to pursue a legal complaint.

Amiens president Bernard Joannin said in a Facebook live broadcast: “Injustice prevails. Amiens could not defend to the end, on the pitch, to remain in Ligue 1.

“I will fight with all the teams to assert our right, because I think this decision is not right. We will wait for the minutes of the LFP board of directors.

“There will be the passage to the general assembly, and we reserve the right to go further so that justice passes.”

The LFP have also crowned Lorient, who led Lens by just one point, as Ligue 2 champions with both clubs earning promotion.

“There might be appeals but our decisions are solid,” Didier Quillot, the chief executive of the French League, said.

As the third-tier Championnat National is under French Football Federation (FFF) jurisdiction, they will decide the fate of the promoted teams in that competition with the LFP, as two must come down.

Orleans are seven points adrift at the bottom but 18th-placed Niort and 19th-placed Le Mans are both on 26 points.

The LFP also confirmed their intention to begin the 2020/21 Ligue 1 and 2 seasons on the weekend of August 22-23 at the latest.

The Eredivisie in Netherlands also opted to bring their season to a premature conclusion last week, without champions or relegation, while on Monday Belgian clubs postponed a vote on confirming the cancellation of their top flight until next week.