Following the FA Council ratification of the decision of the FA Women’s Football Board and Women’s Football Conference to null and void the 2019-20 season for tiers 3 to 7 of the Women’s Pyramid of Football, we've set out below an update on those tiers ahead of the 2020-21 season.
At a recent meeting of the FA Women’s Football Board concern was expressed that some leagues within the Women’s Pyramid of Football may have finished the 2019-20 season significantly below the standard number of teams which, in some cases, was likely to impact upon, and compromise, their ability to run a viable competition for the 2020-21 season.
As a result, we have sanctioned team movement where the number of teams remaining in a division was considered too low for the league programme to run effectively and may, as a result, have impacted negatively on both its participating clubs and the Women’s Pyramid as a whole.
All leagues from Tier 3-6 were able to apply for additional teams, with the decision to grant club movement made based on the following numbers:
• Any 12-team division which is running at nine or less teams
• Any 10-team division which is running at seven or less teams
Applications to fill any vacancies were open to teams in leagues which feed directly into the division with a vacancy and were assessed on the following key criteria:
• Club structure
• Off-field administration
• On-field playing record
Movement only took place where absolutely necessary to ensure the health of the Pyramid for the 2020-21 season. As a result, 17 clubs have been moved:
North East Regional Women’s Football League Premier
Alnwick Town LFC
Sheffield Wednesday LFC
North East Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 North
Bishop Auckland LFC
West Allotment Celtic LFC
North East Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 South
Farsley Celtic Juniors LFC
Millmoor Juniors LFC
Harrogate Town FC Ladies Development
North West Women’s Regional League Division 1 South
Runcorn Linnets FC Ladies
East Midlands Women’s Regional Football League Division 1 North
Sherwood FC Women
Grimsby Town FC Women
East Midlands Women’s Regional Football League Division 1 South
Coalville Town Ravenettes LFC
AFC Leicester Girls & Ladies FC
West Midlands Regional Women’s Football League Division 1 North
Tamworth FC Ladies
Eastern Region Women's Football League Division 1 North
Thorpe St Andrew
Eastern Region Women's Football League Division 1 South
South West Regional Women’s Football League Western Division
AFC St Austell Ladies
Clubs that made an application that was unsuccessful were given 14 days to appeal the decision.
In addition, following thorough consideration, the FA Women’s Football Board has made a decision to allow all match statistics from the 2019-2020 season to remain in place, despite having to bring the respective campaigns to an early close.
This covers player statistics, such as goals and appearances, alongside team records and allows the achievements of players and teams throughout the 2019-20 season, prior to the impact of COVID-19, to be recognised.
Preparations are now well underway for the 2020-2021 season, with more information in due course on key dates and fixtures.