The EFL has confirmed all Championship, League One and Two football games will be indefinitely suspended.
The indefinite suspension is in co-ordination with the FA, Premier League, Women’s Super League and Women’s Championship. The bodies reiterated their commitment to finish the disrupted 2019/20 season.
As part of the announcement, the Premier League have also announced an intent to advance £125million in solidarity payments with the EFL and National League, and make a £20million donation to the NHS.
Originally, English football’s suspension was scheduled to last until this current weekend (April 3rd-6th) when it was announced matches would be suspended on March 13th.
The suspension was later extended by an agreement between English football’s governing bodies to April 30th, but has now been raised to being an indefinite wait.
Indefinite pauses have previously been announced by the governing bodies in other European countries affected by the coronavirus pandemic, although Belgium became the first European country to declare it would be stopping its league early on Thursday (02/04).
Lower leagues below the men’s National League tiers and the Women’s Championships were originally announced to be voided, although this has been met with protests by a number of affected clubs.
The EFL’s statement read, “As a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic the EFL, Premier League, FA and Barclays FA Women’s Super League and FA Women’s Championship has today collectively agreed to postpone its football competitions until it is safe to resume.
“Football is committed in supporting the Government’s efforts in tackling the COVID-19 outbreak and the staging of football matches in this country. It is clearly something that simply cannot happen at this time. The thoughts of everyone associated with the EFL and its member Clubs are with anyone currently affected by the Coronavirus.
“The situation will be kept under constant review with matches only returning at an appropriate point and based on the latest guidance provided by the relevant Government departments and health authorities.
“The EFL also notes and appreciates the decision taken today by the Premier League in respect of the short term financial relief it is to provide EFL Clubs through the advancement of solidarity payments, parachute payments and Academy Grants. These actions will have a positive impact on individual Clubs across our three divisions at a difficult and uncertain time.”
UEFA has also announced that they will be lifting the ban on showing Saturday 3pm kick-offs in England and Scotland on live domestic television, following a request from the two countries’ respective Football Associations. This move is seen as a step towards allowing matches to resume behind closed doors.