Clubs criticise decision to end English lower-tier leagues


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27 Mar, 2020 8:55 am

(Reuters) – South Shields is considering legal action against the Football Association after all results for the 2019-20 season below the three divisions of the fifth-tier National League were expunged due to the coronavirus crisis.

The FA announced the move on Thursday but the decision has angered teams like South Shields, who are 12 points clear at the top of the Northern Premier Division and closing in on promotion to National League North.

“We do not understand the rush there has been among many quarters of the non-league game to conclude the season so quickly,” the club said in a statement here

“We will write to the FA in the strongest possible terms so they are left in no uncertainty as to our feelings, and will seek to appeal if there is a mechanism to do so. If the response does not satisfy us we will seek legal advice.”

The FA’s decision also applies to women’s football below the Women’s Super League and Championship, while grassroots football has been brought to a close for the season.

Barnsley Women, who are currently in the National League Division One North, expressed their frustration in a statement here , accusing the FA of “not taking women’s football seriously”.

“Let’s take whatever action is necessary and available to get the FA to do the right thing,” the club said.

The Premier League and other top level soccer in England is suspended until at least April 30 but the governing bodies have said the current season can be extended indefinitely.


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