The FA have today announced the termination of the 2019/20 season, and the impact it will have on the National League System.
All Leagues at Steps 3-6 of the National League System have been in consultation with the Football Association this week with regards to the potential options which are available with regards to the 2019/20 season. When assessing each option, the FA have taken into account the impact of each option on clubs, players, staff and the fabulous volunteer network within the NLS. We have also taken into account the interests of supporters and the impact of any decision on the sporting integrity of the NLS.
Consideration was given to whether the season could be extended indefinitely but given the current uncertainty regarding when it will be possible to resume competitive football in England, this option was likely to present great difficulties for football at Steps 3-6.
On the basis that the season is now over, consideration was given to whether a mechanism should be used to calculate final league tables and preserve promotion and relegation between Steps 3-6. However it has been decided that this is not the best option to serve the particular needs of Steps 3-6 of the NLS.
As a result, The FA and the Leagues at Steps 3 to 6 of the NLS have therefore reached a consensus that, the 2019/20 season for Steps 3 to 6 will be ended with immediate effect and all results will be expunged. This will mean no promotion or re legation of clubs between Steps 3 to 6, or relegation from Step 2.
In light of the above, these decisions will also apply to the Leagues and Clubs who play at Step 7 of the National League System.
The National League (Steps 1 and 2 of the NLS) are seeking permission of the FA to extend their season beyond theist June 2020 to align with the Premier League, English Football League and the Women’s Super League.
The planned implementation of the restructure of the NLS will be deferred until the start of the 2021/22 season. The decisions reached by the NLS leagues will be recommended to the FA Board and FA Council for final ratification.