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Steps three to six of non-league football curtailed by FA

The 2020/21 season of non-league football, from steps three to six, have been curtailed with immediate effect for the second season running.

Steps three to six of non-league football curtailed by FA

Over 75 per cent of the teams voted to end the campaign if fans could not be welcomed to games before April 1 and UK prime minister Boris Johnson dashed any hopes of this occurring in his COVID-19 lockdown road-map announcement on Monday, which confirmed sporting events could only have spectators from May 17.

A Football Association statement read: "During this process, taking into account views of clubs and leagues, it was decided that extending the 2020-21 league season beyond the end of May 2021 would not be a viable option.

"This was due to various considerations, including the financial implications for many clubs, player contracts and the extent of the fixture scheduling issues caused by the national lockdown and various postponements which had resulted in there being 81 per cent of matches left to complete for Steps 3 and 4, and 75 per cent at Steps 5 and 6.

"Taking into account the survey results and the ongoing impact of Covid-19, which continues to adversely affect incomes for clubs due to restrictions on both spectators and hospitality, our alliance and leagues committees have reached a consensus that, subject to the approval of FA Council, the 2020-21 league season for Steps 3-6 of the NLS should be curtailed with immediate effect, with no further league matches taking place this season.

"It has also been decided that, subject to FA Council's decision regarding the curtailment of the season at Steps 3 to 6, both committees will revisit discussions around a potential restructure at Steps 4-6 of the NLS, which was previously agreed and has been on hold since the 2019-20 season. A further update on this will be provided in due course."

The decision means that it is the second time in a row that results have been declared nil and void in non-league football after it was done so in March last year.

Author: Jake Wilkin