The top team in this year's Major League Soccer (MLS) regular season will receive the Supporters' Shield after all, in a reversal of an earlier decision, the league said on Friday.
The Supporters' Shield Foundation said last week that awarding the prize "goes against the spirit of the Shield," amid the COVID-19 pandemic that has disrupted the season and resulted in fans being barred from stadiums.
But the foundation has reversed the decision after discussions with the MLS Independent Supporters Council.
"We based our initial decision on the many schedule imbalances throughout the 2020 season," the foundation said in a statement. "However, the conversations we have had over the last week have proven that a winner should be declared no matter what."
In addition to the Shield, the best team in the regular season gets a financial bonus and top seeding in the playoffs.
The regular season is scheduled to finish on Nov. 8 and the 2020 campaign is due to culminate in the MLS Cup in December.
(Reporting by Amy Tennery; Editing by Ken Ferris)