Non-League season voided by FA with women’s football also affected


The Football Association has today announced that clubs who are situated in Steps 3-6 of the non-league pyramid (7-11 in the English pyramid) have had their 2019/20 seasons cancelled and voided which means no promotions or relegations will take place to and from Step 2 and Step 7.

It means this situation affects just under 900 clubs in total. The announcement has also meant it also affects those who play in non-elite women’s football, with leagues below the FA Women’s Championship (Step 2) finishing their seasons with immediate effect.

This news comes just weeks after football in England was postponed due to the Coronavirus Pandemic (Covid-19) which has swept the country and the world since January.

In a statement released earlier, the FA announced:

“We have been working collaboratively with the National League System (NLS), the women’s football pyramid and the wider grassroots game since the outbreak of COVID-19 on how to conclude the 2019-20 season in the most appropriate way possible.

These are challenging circumstances for English football and all decisions taken are in the best interests of the game and in consultation across key stakeholders. Our primary concern will always be for the safety and welfare of clubs, players, staff, officials, volunteers and supporters during this unprecedented time.

Today’s steps take into account the financial impact during this uncertain period, whilst considering the fairest method on how the sporting outcomes for the season will be decided with the integrity of the leagues in mind.”

What Is The Reaction To This?

The reaction to this announcement comes with a range of mixed views by many in the non-league and women’s game.

Many people involved with clubs across the football pyramid had hoped the decision of cancelling and voiding the season wouldn’t be considered and instead would see clubs have their fate determined by points per game (PPG).

However, for some teams like Vauxhall Motors who had achieved promotion with seven games to spare are far, its evident they are far from happy with this decision.

For debutant side Jersey Bulls, its quite evident that their season of hard work and effort has come to nothing as Hugo Greenhalgh suggests in his tweet:

Whilst this decision does now mean the 2019/20 season is now over for the majority of those in non-league football, this abrupt conclusion does now mean that clubs can go ahead in preparing themselves for the return of competitive football in July/August.

However its becoming noticed that some clubs are potentially looking like they won’t take this decision lying down as Andy Sixsmith reports on what could happen involving South Shields of the Northern Premier League.

To conclude, all eyes will be on the FA and what it decides should happen to those clubs in the professional games in the top four tiers of the English pyramid as well as if they’ll change their stance on the rulings today.


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Photographer who's gone everywhere from covering non-league football to covering England internationals. Occasionally write but mostly at football matches with a camera and mono-pod.

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