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Wanderers have no plans to return to training as EFL decision draws near

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Top level football has been given a provisional green light to return next month behind closed doors - but Wanderers could find out in the next couple of days what that means for their season in League One.

The Government yesterday confirmed that NO professional sport will return until June 1 at the earliest, provided measures to reduce the spread of coronavirus are successful.

Speaking in the House of Commons, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said being able to hold sporting events without the risk of large-scale social contact could "provide a much-needed boost to national morale".

But while that bodes well for the Premier League's Project Restart plan - the EFL is expected to resume discussions with its own clubs today on whether fixtures can be completed, and if not, how league placings can best be decided.

FA chairman Greg Clarke is believed to have told Premier League clubs that cancelling relegation would not be sanctioned by the governing body, nor would 'voiding' the season altogether.

EFL clubs were told in April told not to resume training until May 16 “at the earliest” with the aim of finishing the season in 56 days.

That date falls this weekend but Wanderers have made no plans to bring players back into Lostock and say they are still waiting for guidance from the EFL before making their next move.

Over the last few weeks the prospect of ending the season has appeared more likely - with Salford City owner Gary Neville admitting last week he was "99 per cent sure" that football would not return in the fourth tier.

Rotherham chairman Tony Stewart has called on the EFL to make a decision swiftly.

"We need a decision, we need to get some direction from the Football League," he said. "They are our masters. We have been waiting patiently and it will be nice to know where we are at this time.

"I have got doubts, it will be very difficult to restart. I don't see League One and League Two starting.

"I would be amazed. They are talking about mid-June, we are talking about just weeks that we have got to prepare for it.

"I don't think there is the time to get it organised and together. But if instruction comes we have to do what we have to do.

"The EFL are meeting on Wednesday or Thursday, we are led to believe something will come out of that.

"I just think that what we need is to get instructions so we know which way we are going.

"We don't know what the decision is, but what I am told is that Thursday at the latest, maybe Wednesday, but certainly Thursday a decision will be made and we will know where we stand on this season and the start of next season".

Several major news sources have claimed that the EFL clubs will be polled by the league from today, although it remains to be seen whether the Government's plans to ease lockdown measures will have any effect on the general thinking.

The Premier League also faces backlash over proposals to use neutral stadia to complete the season - with at least seven clubs asking for a Government rethink on the matter.


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