Brian Caldwell provides an insight into yesterday's EFL meeting.
Yesterday afternoon, representatives from Sky Bet EFL League One clubs gathered to discuss a number of topics regarding the return of football next season.
CEO Brian Caldwell who was in attendance at yesterday’s meeting provided the supporters with the following update which covered a number of topics that are crucial for a successful start to next season.
EFL & SGSA Social Distancing and return of crowds
“The EFL stated that they have been in discussion with the government for several weeks now regarding fans returning safely to grounds with social distancing measure still in place.
“They are currently looking at this around reduced capacity in stadiums”
“The EFL are working closely with the SGSA on a study to look at crowd flows and social distancing to help ensure some form of fans can return to games safely on a potential reduced attendance.
“I think the main thing for fans to take away from this is that everything is being done to try and ensure fans can return to matches as soon as possible providing it’s safe of course. It was mentioned that they are working closely with government and the relevant authorities with the goal of hopefully having the possibility of fans even on reduced attendances returning for the start of next season all being well.
“The EFL updated Clubs on the potential for streaming of matches but stressed that streaming is a Plan B and all efforts must be put towards allowing fans to return to matches safely. Streaming is not being viewed as a replacement for fans in the stadium but as an alternative.”
Start Dates 20/21 Season
“At the moment working around the international break on the 5th of September, would leave us with two potential start dates, either the 29th of August or the 12th of September.
“If we were to vote on the 29th of August that would mean nine midweek matches instead of the normal five, with no runs of three league midweek games in a row.
“If we were to vote on the 12th of September this would firstly mean a broken start to the new campaign as some Clubs may have players away on international duty for up to ten days. On top of that, midweek matches would become 11 instead of five therefore meaning that there could be three midweek games back to back. Part of the issue is the loss of furlough from an earlier return on 29th August.
“Either option will cause a backload which is why it’s important to try and get crowds in if we can.”
The club will continue to update the fans as soon as we have any more updates from the EFL.