‘People in every country watch the Premier League’ – Jota says finishing the season is of ‘major’ importance

The Wolves forward believes thecampaign can still be salvaged despite the coronavirus pandemic

Diogo Jota says it is of “major” importance to world football that the Premier League season is completed.

The Wolves forward is optimistic the campaign can avoid being closed down early, although he accepts behind-closed-doors games may be inevitable.

Most top-flight clubs had nine games remaining in the league when the coronavirus crisis meant the season had to be paused.

Matches have been suspended since mid-March with no official return date in sight as England remains largely locked down due to Covid-19.

At the time of the shutdown, Wolves were sitting sixth, while they also have the Europa League to think about having reached the last 16 on the competition.

Portugal international Jota has been an important figure in Nuno Espirito Santo’s team and he hopes to soon be back in action.

He told BBC Sport: “I believe the Premier League can finish.

“We don’t need to look to other countries. Each country has its own problems and has to deal with them individually.

“Although some leagues can end right away, others can start sooner. I know almost every country in the world has the Premier League as one of the leagues to watch, so it is major that we can finish the season.”

The Eredivisie called a halt to the 2019-20 season on Friday , with no champions, relegation or promotion, a decision that sparked an outcry from a number of clubs.

Most European leagues nevertheless appear hopeful of a resumption, and Jota can picture the scenario where the Premier League starts up again, albeit without spectators.

He said that given the choice of stopping the season or playing the remaining games behind closed doors, then “obviously we finish the season behind closed doors”, but Jota stressed “everyone” would rather play in front of a crowd.

The 23-year-old added: “Maybe we need to go step by step and the first step is to play behind closed doors.”

Jota originally joined Wolves on loan in 2017 before sealing a permanent move to the club from Atletico Madrid one year later.

The Portuguese attacker has fired 42 goals in 120 appearances since making the move to England, with 15 of those goals coming in his 37 appearances across all competitions this season.