Liverpool were reportedly set to take on the winner of the Championship in this year’s Community Shield – but that is no longer looking likely to be the case.
As Premier League champions, the Reds will be involved in the campaign opener, as they were last season as runners up in the league, with Manchester City having won the title and the FA Cup.
But this year, the Wembley fixture has been disrupted by coronavirus’s impact on the football calendar.
The winners of the FA Cup would normally face the Premier League champions – or the runners up in the league if one team was to win both trophies – but City could still be in the Champions League at that point.
The FA’s plans have been impacted by UEFA’s scheduling of the remainder of this year’s European tournaments.
The Community Shield is anticipated to be held at some point in August – potentially August 23, the same weekend as both the Champions League final and Europa League final, just a week before the new season could begin – which means it could clash with UEFA’s tournaments.
Three FA Cup semi-finalists – City, Manchester United and Chelsea – are all still involved in European competitions, so they may not be available to face Jurgen Klopp’s men.
That had led to speculation that Leeds United or West Bromwich Albion, as potential winners of the Championship, could be invited to take part in the game instead.
But the Daily Mail report that the preferred solution at this stage would be to have the most successful team in FA Cup history present instead.
Arsenal, with 15 FA Cups, would then be Liverpool’s opponents.
Mikel Arteta’s Gunners have already been knocked out of the Europa League and therefore have no other commitments that would get in the way.