Second wasted season likely

TONY VANCE says the now almost certain null and voiding of a second straight Isthmian League season is hardly surprising and vindicates GFC’s early decision to withdraw.

Guernsey FC manager Tony Vance. (Picture by ESA Photos, 29103716)
Guernsey FC manager Tony Vance. (Picture by ESA Photos, 29103716)

And with the start of the 2021-22 UK step three and four season possibly under threat, Vance predicts that it may ‘have a massive impact’ on club finances and futures.

Nick Robinson, chair of the Isthmian League, issued a statement to say that his board, together with its fellow Trident Leagues [Northern and Southern], had reviewed the implications of the latest government lockdown. The matter was also discussed at length by the FA’s Alliance committee earlier this week.

All three of the Trident League’s boards hold the view that the season should cease immediately and be declared null and void.

The ultimate decision lies with the FA Council, following a proposal made by the Alliance Committee, but no proposal will be drafted until clubs’ views have been collated and assessed.

At GFC’s level there seems to be realisation of the seriousness of the health situation in the UK and little appetite to play a reduced season.

In the meantime, the Isthmian Football League is postponing all fixtures up to and including Saturday 6 March.

Vance said he was not surprised at all with the news that the league bosses were suggesting an early end to the season and, again, making the campaign null and void.

‘It was always in the back of our minds right from the off,’ said the GFC boss.

‘It vindicates our decision.

‘I struggle to see why some of the UK teams couldn’t see that.

‘It is interesting to see if it carries on into next season.’

After a number of clubs adopted crowd-funding to help see them through to the end of last season, there have been no public declarations of clubs in new financial strife.

The few Isthmian League players who are on contract have been furloughed and those players not on contracts simply won’t have been paid. But the longer the time football is sidelined by Covid-19 the financial situation will only worsen.

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