English soccer changes schedule to avoid funeral clash
LONDON (AP) — English soccer is altering its schedule to avoid a clash with the funeral of Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, on April 17.
The English Football League, which runs the three divisions below the top-flight Premier League, said the matches scheduled to start at 3 p.m. that day will be moved so they don’t clash with the funeral service beginning at the same time.
“The EFL will now work with its clubs to determine at what time the matches will be played, giving consideration to the timing of the service,” the league said in a statement on Saturday.
The Premier League has yet to officially comment. Wolverhampton hosts Sheffield United in a 3 p.m. kickoff on April 17. There is another league game earlier that day -- Newcastle vs. West Ham -- while Chelsea plays Manchester City in the FA Cup semifinals in a 5:30 p.m. start.
The British government has left it at the discretion of sports to decide whether to move events.
Philip’s royal ceremonial funeral will take place at Windsor Castle — a slimmed-down service amid the COVID-19 pandemic that will be entirely closed to the public.
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