Cardiff and Swansea City set to resume bid for promotion to the Premier League

Credit: PA

Football is back. Well kind of...

As the Sports Reporter for ITV Wales and a huge football fan, I cheered out loud at the announcement that a team sport would be back on our screens.

There was much debate about how and if football would continue during the pandemic and for most leagues around the country the decision was made to formally end them, with positions being decided by "Points Per Game".

Wales' top four football clubs Cardiff City, Swansea City, Newport County and Wrexham had been sitting in limbo for the last three months, each wondering whether they would be kicking a football around again this season.

Matches for the remainder of the season will be played without fans in the stadiums. Credit: PA

For Newport County in EFL League Two and Wrexham in the National League their league positions were finalised in the last couple of weeks; Newport finishing in 14th and Wrexham finishing in 20th.

But for Cardiff and Swansea in the Championship their league will resume this weekend with both teams heading into what they are calling a "mini 9 game tournament" as they fight to challenge for a playoff position.

How the Championship table looks ahead of the league restarting this weekend. Credit: ITV Wales

Cardiff currently sit in 9th position and Swansea sit in 11th, just two and three points respectively off 6th place and playoff territory.

From speaking to the club's managers and captains, I wouldn't rule either of them out making it into the playoffs, with both admitting that the break has given them a chance to refocus and re-energise for the final part of this extraordinary season.

Pre-pandemic match form was pretty similar for both clubs too; winning one match in the last five so I expect the teams to come out firing to put that right.

So to the weekend. Swansea travel to 19th placed Middlesborough on Saturday and Cardiff host league leaders Leeds on Sunday.

Both tasty affairs and the start of a five-week football fest!

But whilst footballers may be back on the pitch, the fans will have to cheer from their sofas as all games in the Premier League and Championship will be played behind closed doors.

This being a sobering reminder that although the leagues resume, there is still a long way to go before sport returns to how it was before.