The Football Association have announced today that the 2019-20 season has been declared null and void.
In a letter to clubs at steps 3 to 6 (Isthmian League to Eastern Senior League, including the Essex Senior League), the FA confirmed that there would be no promotion or relegation.
The statement read: “In assessing the available options for Steps 3 to 6, we have considered the impact of each option on clubs, players, staff and the fabulous volunteer network within the NLS. We have also taken into account the interests of supporters and the impact of any decision on the sporting integrity of the NLS and football more generally, as well as any commercial or financial considerations for all those involved in football at this level. We also need to consider the impact of any decision on season 20/21.
“Consideration has been given as to whether the season could be extended indefinitely, or to some later date in the future in order for it to be completed. However, given the current uncertainty regarding when it will be possible to resume competitive football in England, and the fact that many clubs and contracted players want certainty over when football will resume, this option is likely to present great difficulties for football between Steps 3 to 6.
“On the basis that the season is ended now, consideration was given as to whether a mechanism should be used to calculate final league tables and preserve promotion and relegation between Steps 3 to 6.
“Whilst inevitably some clubs will favour this option and the merits of this option have been fully considered by The FA and the leagues, it has been decided that this is not the best option to serve the particular needs of Steps 3 to 6 of the NLS.
“As a result, The FA and the Leagues at Steps 3 to 6 of the NLS have therefore reached a consensus that, the 2019/20 season for Steps 3 to 6 will be ended with immediate effect and all results will be expunged. This will mean no promotion or relegation of clubs between Steps 3 to 6, or relegation from Step 2.