Saturday 14th March 2020, 12:25; I should have been listening to Z-Cars blast out over the tannoy system at Vicarage Road whilst Watford walked out to take on Nigel Pearson’s former club, Leicester City. Instead I was sitting on my bed, twiddling my thumbs and stalking my ex-girlfriend’s Facebook feeling sorry for myself.

This was only week 1 of X without any live sport, let alone football. I will never understand what people who don’t like football do with their weekends. Like many of you I’m a season ticket holder and last year passed my 20th anniversary of following Watford. Going to the football on a Saturday is quite simply just the norm for me, like it is for thousands of other fans around the country. When there’s no football, I genuinely don’t know how to fill my time, I feel almost empty.

You all know by now how we reached this stage and the severity of COVID-19. Ceasing all sporting activity, whilst a pain in the backside was completely necessary. This is the first time since World War Two that the football league has been suspended. It’s unprecedented in our generation, but if we want football to return we have to do our bit. “Short term pain for long term gain” as my dad would often say when I refused to revise for school exams.

So when football does return, we have no idea in what capacity that will be. Premier League clubs are said to be meeting on Thursday 19th to discuss potential ideas. Social media has been inundated with the possibilities facing the Premier League, EFL and WSL. The option that the majority of clubs and fans seem to be backing is completing the current season and after the recent news that Euro 2020 has been postponed until 2021, this seems like a sensible option.

The other solution is to void the season in the hope of starting 2020/21 on time in August. I dislike this option. Firstly, whilst it would be hilarious to see the reaction on Twitter to Liverpool being denied their first league title in 30 years, I don’t think it’s fair when they are so close to winning it. I’d be devastated if that was us in that position and I’d have been gutted for the fans of a team like Leicester if it happened during their incredible underdog 2015/16 season. When it comes to relegation financially there is just too much at stake to either relegate the sides that currently make up the bottom three (where Villa have a game in hand!) and to not promote the top two teams in the Championship. Even if these teams were bumped up to a Premier League that consisted of 22 teams for the following season, there will be one team in the Championship Playoff places that misses out.

My personal opinion? For what it’s worth (which is very little), I think the season should be completed as I see it as the fairest of all options. If this had happened around Christmas time I would have been more on the side of voiding the season, but as we’re so close to the end I think it silly to call it quits. If all of the crucial league placings (Champions; European spots, relegation places) had been mathematically decided by now I’d also just say end it there. Alas, they are not and whilst Liverpool are miles ahead of Manchester City, the Statistician in me says that whilst there is still a mathematical possibility for someone else to win the title and get relegated, you have to play on to the end.

Should the games be played behind closed doors? In my opinion; no. Not only does it just feel wrong to play professional sport without an audience, but also we would lose our home advantage. Whilst the home advantage it’s a cliché, it’s a cliché for a reason; because it exists. There have been numerous studies into the home advantage over a variety of invasion sports such as football, American football and ice hockey to name just a few. I read about it extensively during my degree and would encourage you to read some of the papers on the subject, it’s really interesting and goes into depth about things like crowd proximity and the effect a crowd can have on a match official. Watford’s remaining home fixtures are against Leicester, Southampton, Norwich, Newcastle and Manchester City. Games in which we would be hopeful of picking up points where the presence of a home crowd could have a game-changing influence.

Some may call me stupid, given how close Watford are to relegation zone and whilst it would be an easy way to escape the drop to the Championship, I don’t think it’s right or fair.

With the suspension of Euro 2020 until next Summer, this hopefully allows for enough time for the final nine games of the season to be completed. The start of next season will no doubt have to be delayed and it wouldn’t surprise me if the League Cup and the FA Cup were cancelled for one season, to allow for more midweek league fixtures in order for the season to end on time for the Euros. How feasible this is, I have no idea, especially when you take players’ contracts into account. Thankfully though, this is not a headache I have to have.

All we can do in the meantime is fill our weekends with other things we’ve been putting off for a while. Perhaps you could paint that wall you’ve been meaning to for years? Binge on a new TV series, learn some new songs on that instrument you used to play, catch up with friends (over the phone or via Skype/Facetime!) whom you haven’t spoken to in a while or volunteer to help the elderly and vulnerable in your community via Watford’s ‘Hornet’s At Home’ scheme. Use this sport-free time to your advantage, don’t stalk your ex’s Facebook like I did.

Look after yourselves and each other and just remember that if we do resume the season and proceed to get relegated yes we’ll be upset, angry… but we’ve had a taste of a life without football and a life without Watford and quite frankly I don’t want to be in world without either, regardless of what division we’re playing in.