Fate of League One season remains unknown as clubs meeting ends without resolution but League Two campaign is cancelled
League One clubs including Rotherham United and Doncaster Rovers will reconvene early next week after their latest meeting ended without a decision on how to resolve the current campaign.
However, in a separate meeting to determine the outcome of their division, League Two clubs unanimously agreed to end the season at this point.
The 23 League One clubs held a video call on Friday morning to discuss whether or not to pursue a conclusion to the 2019/20 season on the pitch and, if not, how the campaign would be concluded.
It was widely expected throughout the week that a decision would be taken to end the season now, with concern growing among clubs that attempting to play on behind closed doors would be financially disastrous. Clubs have received little to no income for more than two months since football was shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
However, a group of League One clubs made a public declaration on Thursday evening of their intent to fight the case for playing on, rather than their final finishing position being determined by other calculations such as points per game, or seeing the season voided entirely.
Friday’s meeting between the 23 clubs failed to end with a united position on how to proceed. A follow-up meeting has been scheduled for Monday.
The EFL later confirmed the events of the meeting in a statement.
It read: “There were varied views shared in League One and it was determined that there would be a further period of reflection and consultation to understand what creative solutions could be implemented.
“It was acknowledged that the need to find innovative and creative solutions was of paramount importance as was the need for decisions to be taken quickly.”
League Two clubs met on Friday afternoon and delivered the expected verdict that the season should be ended.
They also asked the EFL board to consider not relegating any clubs to the National League but no judgement was made on that at this stage.
The EFL statement read: “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, clubs asked for consideration to be given to suspending relegation to the National League for 2019/20 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.”
A presentation from the EFL board was made to clubs across the two divisions, outlining a framework for deciding final placings should no further fixtures be played and with promotion and relegation as normal, along with a play-off campaign for each division.
The EFL also confirmed that Championship clubs indicated their intention to complete the season earlier this week.