League Two clubs hand Stevenage a relegation lifeline with desire ‘to suspend relegation’

PUBLISHED: 16:26 15 May 2020 | UPDATED: 16:26 15 May 2020

League Two clubs want no relegation this season, a move which would save Stevenage. Picture: ADAM DAVY/PA

League Two clubs want no relegation this season, a move which would save Stevenage. Picture: ADAM DAVY/PA

PA Wire/PA Images

Stevenage have been handed a lifeline to their Football League status after League Two clubs “asked for consideration to be given to suspending relegation to the National League”.

A meeting of the sides on Friday morning had agreed to end the season immediately, with Boro rock bottom of the table.

But although they want promotion and play-offs as usual, the consensus was to have no relegation.

A statement from the EFL said: “Representatives of League One and League Two clubs have met today by division where they have shared a wide range of comprehensive views in respect of how the 2019-2020 season is concluded.

“The rationale for playing the remaining matches has been fully debated with a particular focus on the issues COVID-19 has created in respect of health and wellbeing, ongoing testing requirements, player registration issues and the financial burdens clubs already face at this difficult time.

“In the event of a curtailment of the season, the EFL board outlined how this could be addressed through a framework that includes maintaining the principle of promotion and relegation, league tables to be determined via unweighted points per game (PPG) and play-offs to remain in every division to determine the final promotion place.

“The EFL board, whose aspiration has always been to conclude the season by completing the remaining fixtures, has previously stated that any decision on how to conclude the season is a matter for clubs to determine in their respective divisions.

“Having considered the protocols and costs that would be required to be met to conclude the current season, League Two clubs have unanimously indicated a preferred direction of travel to curtail the campaign in line with the framework outlined by the EFL board.

“In addition, they asked for consideration to be given to suspending relegation to the National League for 2019-2020 as a result of circumstances created where fixtures cannot be completed.

“No commitments were made in this respect and the board will now consider the implications of the division’s preferred approach at their next meeting.”

Any final decision would need to be ratified by the FA.

League One clubs want “a further period of reflection and consultation to understand what creative solutions could be implemented” while Championship clubs met earlier this week and have indicated “that it is their wish to play on and conclude the season”.


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