Lockdown halts grassroots football

All grassroots football clubs across Cambridgeshire will be out of action until at least December 2 under new coronavirus lockdown restrictions.

Adult and junior male and female football, including fixtures and training will be suspended from Thursday, November 5 for at least 28 days, an FA statement has said.

The suspension will also affect our non-league teams such as Wisbech Town, Soham Town Rangers, Ely City, March Town, Wisbech St Mary and Whittlesey Athletic, who all play between steps four and six of the national league system.

However, the FA have said that school sport will continue during this period.

It said: “As a result of the UK Government’s new national Covid-19 restrictions, and subject to Members of Parliament voting tomorrow (Wednesday) and the publication of bespoke guidance from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, the impact on ‘non elite’ football in England will include the suspension of the following during this period:

• All fixtures and training for Steps 3-6 of the National League System [NLS];

• All fixtures and training for Tiers 3-7 of the Women’s Football Pyramid [WFP];

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• All fixtures and training for the Regional NLS Feeder Leagues;

• All fixtures and training for The Barclays FA WSL Academy League;

• All fixtures and training for FA Girls Regional Talent Clubs;

• All fixtures and training for FA Girls Regional Talent Clubs;

• All fixtures and training for indoor and outdoor youth and adult grassroots football.

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“Our aim is to ensure that the 2020-21 season is completed at these levels and will liaise with the relevant leagues in the NLS, WFP and the County Football Associations to provide support and establish appropriate options to do so if required.”

The statement added: “Restarting football at these levels has taken substantial determination and commitment from stakeholders across the game and we would like to thank everyone for their vital contributions.

“However, health and wellbeing remain the priority, so it is extremely important that clubs, players, coaches, match officials, league officials, volunteers, parents, carers and facility providers adhere to the UK Government’s new national COVID-19 restrictions during this period.”

It is the second time football has been suspended due to Covid-19 after the first lockdown in March.