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League Two clubs agree on promotion but no relegation for 2019-20 season

:Headline: League Two clubs agree on promotion but no relegation for 2019-20 season:
Clubs in the English fourth tier discussed how the 2019-20 campaign could be ended when they met on Friday.

League Two clubs have agreed on how to end the 2019-20 season.

The fourth-tier sides gathered by conference call on Friday and the PA news agency understands the clubs were in favour of three teams being promoted automatically to League One, completing the play-offs to decide on one more side to go up, and on no teams being relegated to the National League.

A points-per-game format was discussed, with any formal ending of the season requiring a similar agreement being reached by League One – whose talks broke up earlier on Friday without a definitive outcome.

Any decision would then require the ratification of the English Football League and the Football Association.

Swindon manager Richie Wellens – whose side were second in League Two when the competition was suspended – tweeted: “Even more good news today. Great day.”

League One clubs are expected to meet again on Monday after no definitive outcome was reached at their meeting on Friday morning.

Six third-tier clubs – Fleetwood, Ipswich, Oxford, Peterborough, Portsmouth, and Sunderland – said on Thursday that they were opposed to ending the season now on a points-per-game basis.

Peterborough owner Darragh MacAnthony tweeted on Thursday evening: “We as a collective are United in our goal to finish this season.

Peterborough owner Darragh MacAnthony says his club and five others are united in wanting to finish the League One season (Mike Egerton/PA)

“We have no desire for voiding the season, PPG scenarios/letting a computer decide our footballing fate.

“For our fans/staff and for the integrity of our sport we are all looking forward to completing our pending fixtures/season under guidance from the EFL at a time it is deemed safe to do so. Thank you for your time.”

The teams involved are all in the top half of the League One standings, from Oxford in third to Ipswich in 10th. Teams in the division have between eight and 10 games left to play.

Rochdale chief executive David Bottomley said his club were firmly behind the EFL collective and would abide by the majority decision, but are in favour of ending the season now after the EFL said training could not resume until May 25 at the earliest.

He told the PA news agency on Thursday: “Our view now is that you have to end the season.

“The key date all along for the last five weeks has been May 18. If players could return to training then, there was a chance to conclude the season by the end of July, which is what the EFL wanted to do to avoid the issues of players out of contract.

“The word that has been bandied from the start by (EFL chairman) Rick Parry is integrity of the competition. I think integrity goes out the window on August 1 because all the players are gone.”

Parry told the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee last week that for many clubs, playing behind closed doors would actually cost them money, and that finishing the 2019-20 season was overwhelmingly a matter of sporting integrity.

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last updated article - 2020-05-15 14:14:04:
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League Two Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CSwindon TownSwindon36216962392369
4Exeter CityExeter371811853431065
5Cheltenham TownCheltenham361713652272564
6Colchester UnitedColchester371513952371558
8Port Vale37141585044657
9Bradford CityBradford371412114440454
10Salford City371311134946350
11Forest Green RoversForest Green361310134340349
12Crawley TownCrawley371115115147448
13Grimsby Town371211144551-647
14Walsall36138154049-947
15Newport CountyNewport361210143239-746
16Cambridge UnitedCambridge37129164048-845
17Leyton Orient361012144755-842
18Carlisle UnitedCarlisle371012153956-1742
19Oldham AthleticOldham37914144457-1341
20Scunthorpe UnitedScunthorpe371010174456-1240
21Mansfield TownMansfield36911164855-738
22Morecambe37711193560-2532
23Macclesfield TownMacclesfield37715153247-1525
RStevenage36313202450-2622
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