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".
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.