As football begins to consider resumption of competitions across the world post the COVID-19 pandemic, sport’s lawmakers have announced clubs will be allowed to make five substitutes per match in competitions which start and finish before the end of 2020. The International Football Association Board (IFAB) said in as stating that it had agreed to a proposal by the world governing body FIFA for a temporary change to the rules ‘to protect player welfare’. Also Read - Passenger on Chennai-Coimbatore IndiGo Flight Tests Positive For COVID-19, Crew Members Grounded For 14 Days

“For competitions which have either started or are intended to start, but are scheduled to be completed by 31 December 2020, the IFAB has approved FIFA’s proposal to introduce a temporary amendment to Law 3 – The Players, which will allow for a maximum of five substitutes to be made per team. However, to avoid disruption to the game, each team will only have three opportunities to make substitutions; substitutions may also be made at half-time,” FIFA said in a media release on their official website, Also Read - WHO Warns of COVID-19 'Second Peak' as Lockdowns Ease

The statement further said the rule changes will be allowed in all competitions which are due to finish by the end of this year and it will be up to individual organisers of competitions whether to implement it or not. Also Read - Karnataka Farmers Team up With Flipkart For Home Delivery of Mangoes

“The temporary amendment comes into force with immediate effect and has been made as matches may be played in a condensed period in different weather conditions, both of which could have impacts on player welfare.

“The decision on whether to apply this temporary amendment will remain at the discretion of each individual competition organiser, while The IFAB and FIFA will determine at a later stage whether this temporary amendment would need to be extended further (e.g. for competitions due to be completed in 2021).”

FIFA also said in competitions where VAR is used, it will remain the same.

“In relation to competitions in which the video assistant referee (VAR) system is implemented, these competitions are permitted to cease its use upon restart at the discretion of each individual competition organiser. However, where VAR is used, all aspects of the Laws of the Game and, by extension, the VAR protocol will remain in place.”

South Korea’s K-League resumed on Friday, two months after the football season was halted abruptly in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The first match after the enforced break was played between Jeonbuk Motors and Suwon Bluewings.

The German Bundesliga season will restart on May 16 after a suspension of more than two months.