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What should the return to non-league look like?

The FSA have partnered with the Non-League Paper to gather the views of thousands of football fans across the country on how they believe football can safely return from its COVID-19 suspension with spectators in the stands. 

The survey, which will run until mid-July, will help form a picture of the attitudes of spectators to a restart in non-league, and allow clubs and league administrators to plan with more certainty ahead of a resumption of matches in 2020.

The survey represents the biggest canvassing of opinions across the game since the declaration of the health emergency in March and the FA announcement on scenario planning considerations.

Andy Walsh, the FSA’s head of the national game, said “The FSA believes that it is is supremely important for the voice of football supporters to be heard in any discussions about the restart of football.

“To obtain the most accurate view of fans of non-league we urge everyone to complete the survey, and share it as widely as possible.”

The FSA have consulted with clubs, supporter representatives and leagues in drawing up the survey, which will find out when supporters intend on returning, and what safety checks they would like to see at their club.

The aim is to present the data to the various leagues in the national game, as well as the FA, as they draw up the guidelines for a restart.

Mark Harris, chairman of the Northern Premier League and member of the FA’s Alliances committee said “I think it’s critical, not only that we make our clubs ready to be playing football again at the earliest opportunity, but that we create an environment in which fans feel comfortable and confident they can come back and watch football safely.

“Although the FA will be taking the lead in producing club guidance information, we need to ensure that guidance is well informed. We’re delighted to be working with the FSA on this to ask fans for their thoughts, and we can’t do without them.”

To complete the survey, head to bit.ly/non-league-survey

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