Non-league season to end from step three down
- Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo
The FA have finally announced the ending of the competitive season for non-league football clubs playing between steps three and six - despite playing no football of any sort since mid-December.
It is the second successive season that the league campaign has been ended without reaching a conclusion although unlike last season the number of games played is less than half.
The statement released by the FA on Wednesday night said: "Our alliance and leagues committees have now considered the large amount of data and information submitted by clubs across the National League System as part of a survey to gather views [of clubs].
"The results showed over 76 per cent indicated a preference to curtail the 2020-21 league season if it could not be restarted with limited spectator numbers and hospitality before April 1."
They also reiterated the fact that "extending the 2020-21 league season beyond the end of May would not be a viable option, citing "financial implications for many clubs, player contracts and the extent of the fixture scheduling issues caused by the national lockdown and various postponements".
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The committees will now present their collective recommendations to the FA council for ratification.
They added that discussions around a potential restructure at steps four to six, which had originally been planned for implementation at the end of last season, would be revisited.
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The government's roadmap out of lockdown, published on Monday, said the earliest date that fans would be allowed in stadia with clubhouses open would be May 17.