Season Curtailed But Tractor Girls Could Still Move Up a Division
Monday, 15th Mar 2021 14:38
The FA have confirmed that FAWNL Division One South East - which Ipswich Town Women lead - has been curtailed with immediate effect, but say they will give clubs an opportunity to apply to move between divisions for the 2021/22 season.
The FAWNL Division One South East (tier four) campaign was suspended in January due to the lockdown with the Tractor Girls leading Hashtag United on goal difference with a 100 per cent record and without conceding a goal, having played only four matches, one fewer than the second-placed side.
The FA announced today that no more games will be played: “The 2020/21 season for tiers three to six of the Women’s football pyramid will be curtailed with immediate effect and declared incomplete, with no further league fixtures taking place this season.
“There will also be no promotion and relegation between these tiers for the 2020/21 season, including no promotion from tier three into tier two and no relegation from tier six into tier seven.”
They added: “The Women’s Football Board, taking into account the views of clubs and leagues, decided that extending the 2020/21 league season beyond the end of May 2021 would not be a viable option due to the operational issues faced by many clubs and leagues.
“Clubs and leagues will however be encouraged to provide playing opportunities over the coming months by organising alternative fixtures in some format, where they are able and feel comfortable to do so following the return of grassroots football from 29th March and in line with the appropriate guidelines.
“In addition, and in light of feedback from clubs and leagues, the Women’s Football Board made the following recommendation to accompany the above decisions: A process of upward club movement, via application and based on set criteria, should take place.
“Further feedback on this will be sought from clubs at tier three to six before details of the process are confirmed, but it is hoped that facilitating club movement will support the stability and integrity of the Women’s Football pyramid following the disruption to the last two seasons.
“This is likely to result in expanded divisions at tiers three to six for the 2021/22 season, something which leagues have indicated they could accommodate.”
Town were similarly top of the league when the 2019/20 season was declared null and void due to the pandemic last March.
The Tractor Girls are still in the Vitality Women’s FA Cup with their second-round tie at Billericay Town to be played on Sunday 4th April after the competition was given to OK to resume earlier this month (KO 2pm).
Photo: Ross Halls
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