The England Football League (EFL) Board has met today to further consider the many complex financial and operational matters for the Championship clubs resulting out of the COVID-19 crisis, including how the 2019/20 campaign is concluded.
League One and Two clubs will speak on Friday, when the prospect of ending the season seems certain to move closer.
While there is much debate and discussion taking place publicly and privately regarding what should, or could, happen next, the EFL will continue to undertake consultation with their members before the next steps are determined.
Current attention is clearly on the immediate next steps, but the long-term impact on the League and its Clubs remains as stark as previously outlined, and solutions are still required to fill the financial hole left by the crisis. The consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic will not be rectified simply by a return to play behind closed doors.
In addition, the EFL is mindful of the pressing need for clarity in a number of areas, including the practicalities and timeframes of Clubs being able to facilitate a return to training. To address this, Clubs have today been issued with the latest draft of the EFL’s ‘Return to Training Protocols’, so that they can prepare appropriately.
However, until all outstanding matters are concluded, including finalizing a comprehensive testing programme on matchdays and non-matchdays, the EFL Board has informed its Clubs that a return to training should not take place until May 25th at the earliest.
Dialogue continues with their colleagues across the footballing and political landscape regarding these and other issues, and the EFL is committed to keeping all relevant parties updated on key decisions and developments as they occur.