EXCLUSIVE: Arsenal fans face a nightmare journey to Newcastle as Premier League look set to push their penultimate fixture of the season back by 24 HOURS from Sunday, May 15 to Monday, May 16 – with Gunners left scrambling at travel options
- Arsenal are currently penciled in to play against Newcastle on Sunday, May 15
- But the game is likely to be delayed by 24 hours and played on Monday evening
- The game could be pivotal in their bid to qualify for the Champions League
- The club are looking at travel options for supporters for the trip to Newcastle
Arsenal supporters face the nightmare scenario of traveling to Newcastle on Monday night with the Premier League set to move their penultimate fixture of the season.
Tottenham fans are facing similar difficulties with their visit to Liverpool on Saturday. May 7, to be moved from 3pm to 7.45pm.
sportsmail understands the Gunners’ trip to St James’ Park – that is currently penciled in for Sunday, May 15 – will be delayed for 24 hours to be played on Monday night.
Arsenal are penciled in to play against Newcastle on Sunday, May 15, away from home
The game will be broadcast live on Sky Sports. The game could be pivotal towards the Gunners’ attempts to qualify for the Champions League and supporters will not want to miss the game given its likely importance.
However, fans face a grim journey home given the likelihood of there being no trains back to London from Newcastle at that time.
Arsenal are looking at travel options for fans for the trip to Newcastle, with subsidized coaches for ticket holders a possibility.
However, getting home from St James’ Park is likely to be arduous.
Indeed, a spokesman for the Arsenal Supporters Trust told sportsmail: ‘Time and again we see matches moved at short notice to times that are just impossible for fans.
However, the game is likely to be delayed by 24 hours and played on Monday evening
Fans face a grim journey home given the likelihood of there being no trains back to London
‘Arsenal as a club claim the views of fans matter. They need to do more than talk and start acting.
‘This means not voting by raising their hands to vote through broadcast contracts that give a free hand to ignore the needs of fans.
‘It also means fully subsidizing a decent travel option to get to a game when it is moved for TV and there is no public transport.’
Spurs fans also face major difficulties in returning from Anfield on May 7, should their game – as planned – be moved to 7.45pm.
Meanwhile, the Premier League are set to confirm the potentially crucially north London derby will be played on May 12 – just 10 days before the final day of the season.
sportsmail exclusively revealed on Thursday that the game was due to take place on the week beginning May 9 – the penultimate week of the season.
The game could be pivotal towards the Gunners’ attempts to qualify for the Champions League
Therefore, the Arsenal faithful will not want to miss out on the opportunity to support their side
And we can now report the game is virtually certain to be played on Thursday, May 12.
The game will be broadcast live on Sky Sports, who are hopeful of billing the crunch clash as a Champions Leaguer decider.
There are no European club fixtures scheduled for that week, meaning the match will almost certainly be the main focus which should serve to increase viewing figures.
As it stands, there appears to be every chance the game will be crucial towards deciding who qualifies for next season’s Champions League.
Tottenham overtook their arch rivals in fourth thanks to Sunday’s 5-1 win over Newcastle, but Arsenal can leapfrog Spurs with victory at Crystal Palace tonight.
Crucially, the Gunners have a game in hand.
The match will also have an extra edge amid developing tensions between the clubs after Arsenal were controversially given the go-ahead to postpone the original date on January 16 due to a Covid outbreak within their camp.
Arsenal are looking at travel options for fans for the trip to Newcastle to ensure they can attend
The decision infuriated Tottenham, who believed that the Gunners had just one come from Covid case – Martin Odegaard.
That friction intensified earlier this month after Spurs boss Antonio Conte was left frustrated by Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta’s complaint that his side were dealt a rough hand by the Premier League in terms of fixture scheduling.
I only want to remember [remind] Arteta [about] the game that we postponed – Tottenham v Arsenal, okay? Yes, if we speak about fair or unfair, okay, and, I stop,’ said Conte.
‘If someone wants to speak about fair or unfair. We postponed a game Tottenham v Arsenal, if you remember. I don’t forget this and I think it is not right to speak about fair or unfair.’