A LEADING local-football official has described the development that friendly matches can be played from the start of this month after the coronavirus shutdown as “brilliant”.
Mark Pilley, secretary of Rotherham Sunday League, says the ruling has paved the way for the 2020/21 league campaign to kick off on September 6.
“I'm very relieved,” he said. “It's brilliant news. September 6 was always our target to resume competitive fixtures and we can work towards that now.”
Rotherham Sunday League has 56 teams across its five divisions and there have been no fixtures since England went into lockdown in March.
Since the Government's decision to relax anti-Covid-19 sporting restrictions, the league has been working with Rotherham Council on social-distancing guidelines and health-and-safety measures involving changing rooms and showers to ensure that official matches can go ahead.
“It may be that the league runs in a reduced format to begin with,” Pilley added. “But it is the start of a new kind of normal.”
The Northern Counties East League season is due to start on September 5.