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UEFA declares Tottenham’s ECL match postponed; Rennes reportedly unwilling to reschedule

Things are getting spicy.

Stade Rennes v Tottenham Hotspur: Group B - UEFA Europa Conference League Photo by Catherine Steenkeste/Getty Images

It’s official, sorta! After a few hours of speculation that involved Tottenham Hotspur making a unilateral statement about today’s scheduled Europa Conference League match and Rennes sniping back and accusing Spurs of “lacking fair play,” UEFA has finally weighed in. The federation issued a short statement that confirmed Tottenham’s statement, saying that match today will NOT take place due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak at Spurs.

UEFA can confirm that the UEFA Europa Conference League group stage match - Tottenham Hotspur v Stade Rennais FC, which was due to be played on 9 December in London, will not be taking place as scheduled. In this regard please refer to the statement of Tottenham Hotspur.

— Statement, UEFA

Finally, some common sense prevails, even though as late as last night there was a chance that it wouldn’t. However, that’s just the beginning. Like in Tottenham’s statement, UEFA doesn’t specify whether the match will be rescheduled or forfeited — just that it’s not happening tonight.

Spurs have proposed rescheduling the match for December 15, according to Ouest-France, but Rennes seemingly have “no intention” of agreeing to that date, since it’s not clear that Spurs’ outbreak will be under control by then. It’s hard to get a sense of whether this is a report that we should pay attention to and believe or not — December 15 is literally one day before Spurs are scheduled to play Leicester City in the league, a match that due to ongoing Premier League COVID protocols is itself very much in question.

Rescheduling the Rennes match is going to be tricky no matter what because of the sheer number of matches that Spurs have before the end of the year — UEFA regulations require that the match be played by December 31 — and also the Ligue 1 winter break which starts on December 22 and lasts until January 7, 2022.

If Tottenham, Rennes, and UEFA are unable to come to some sort of accord (a French word!), then most likely Tottenham would be forced to forfeit the match.