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New season could start in September

19th July, 2020

The 2020/21 Toolstation NCEL could start in September following the news that the FA's plan for the return of outdoor competitive grassroots football has been approved by the UK Government.

A proposed start date for Step 5 and 6 leagues in the National League System (NLS), including the NCEL, is from Saturday 5th September, 2020, but discussions are to take place with competitions at that level to confirm when they will each begin.

An end date for the campaign has been approved the FA's Alliance and Leagues Committees as no later than Saturday 15th May, 2021.

The FA Cup is set to start with the Extra Preliminary Round on Tuesday 1st September, 2020, and the Preliminary Round is scheduled for eleven days later (Saturday 12th) whilst the FA Vase begins on Saturday 19th September, 2020, with the First Qualifying Round.

Pre-season fixtures can start from Saturday 1st August, 2020, but these must be planned to be behind closed doors until advised otherwise, i.e. when an agreement has been finalised between the FA and the Government about the planned return of spectators at NLS grounds.

Clubs have been given guidance documents on the safe return of competitive training and matches. These can be found via the official announcement on the FA's website.

Clubs will need to appoint a COVID-19 officer from their board or trustees who will take responsibility to ensure risk assessments take place to show they can implement appropriate measures to reduce the risk of transmission.

Their risk assessment and/or COVID-19 action plan must be on their club website by Saturday 15th August, 2020, and the league notified of its completion.

Laurence Jones, Head of National League System, said: "We understand that Clubs are anxious to return, and many will have been working hard already to think of how their Club can reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19.

"We would like to thank all Leagues and Clubs for their patience and support during this incredibly difficult period for everyone involved in the NLS.

"The developments announced today give a roadmap to return and the support and collective work of Clubs and Leagues to be ready for September ??" subject to any change in Government policy ??" will be key in achieving this ambition."

Meanwhile, the FA have announced that club allocations for Steps 3 to 7 in the NLS will be released to leagues in the week commencing Monday 20th July, 2020.

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Season 2019/20 Tables

NCEL Premier Division P Pts +/-
1 Staveley MW 26 55 33
2 Liversedge 24 53 38
3 Yorkshire Amateur 26 53 33
4 Penistone Church 28 53 26
5 Bridlington Town 25 48 19
6 Hemsworth MW 28 45 11
7 Maltby Main 28 43 -2
8 Garforth Town 28 41 -4
9 Grimsby Borough 26 40 6
10 Silsden 28 37 -5
11 Barton Town 27 36 0
12 Eccleshill United 25 35 2
13 Knaresborough 25 32 3
14 Thackley 26 32 -5
15 Handsworth 23 30 -16
16 AFC Mansfield 26 28 -10
17 Goole AFC 28 25 -21
18 Bottesford Town 27 23 -28
19 Albion Sports 25 22 -16
20 Athersley Rec 27 12 -64
NCEL Division One P Pts +/-
1 Winterton Rangers 27 59 24
2 Skegness Town 26 58 39
3 Selby Town 25 56 46
4 North Ferriby 26 52 28
5 Campion 24 48 30
6 Retford FC 28 44 6
7 Glasshoughton Welfare 26 43 11
8 Hallam 23 37 11
9 Swallownest 25 37 1
10 Nostell MW 25 35 13
11 Dronfield Town 25 35 7
12 Armthorpe Welfare 28 34 -8
13 Parkgate 25 34 -16
14 Rossington Main 26 31 -6
15 Brigg Town 30 30 -19
16 Ollerton Town 26 28 2
17 Hall Road Rangers 24 28 -8
18 Worsbrough Bridge 24 23 -10
19 Harrogate Railway Athletic 25 16 -35
20 East Hull 26 1 -116

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