Northern League aims for December 5 restart after Lockdown Mk II – and the season will run into May

Northern League fixtures will resume on Saturday, December 5, after the national lockdown has been lifted, the League Management Committee has decided.

However, the decision, made on Thursday night, is subject to any changes to the lifting of the lockdown and in consultation with the FA.

League chairman Glenn Youngman said: “These are unprecedented times and everyone is in a difficult position. We have had to balance the need of clubs and players to prepare for the resumption of matches with the need to complete the league season and getting much-needed income into clubs.

“By making an early decision, clubs will be able to plan as best they can for the resumption of games. By December we will already have effectively lost two months of the season – having to start in September and this latest pause.

“We have been able to complete just under a third of our fixtures, but there is always the potential to lose further fixtures due to bad weather, and there are other cup competitions – such as the Vase and FA county cups in December – which will put further pressure on league fixtures and reduce the number of dates that fixtures can be moved to.

“We will continue to keep under review whether we will hold our own cup competitions.”

Fixtures that have been postponed because of the current national lockdown have been re-arranged for dates towards the end of the season.

Consett’s fixtures have been updated, but more changes are inevitable, as no date has yet been set by The FA for this season’s FA Vase 2nd Round tie v Maltby Main from the Northern Counties East League, which was scheduled to take place during lockdown.

The changes to Consett’s fixtures are:

Sat March 6 (A) Thornaby (from November 11)

Wed April 7 (A) North Shields (from November 18)

Tue April 13 (H) Stockton Town (from November 24)

Tue Apr 20 (A) Ryhope CW (from 1 December)

Wed Apr 28 (A) Guisborough Town (from 28 November)

Sat May 8 (A) Whitley Bay (from 14 November)

TBA (H) Maltby Main FA Vase 2nd Round

TBA FA Vase 2020 Final v Hebburn Town at Wembley

Gary Welford