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The National League is set to ask the FA for eight figure fee to help save clubs

The National League is set to ask the FA for eight figure fee to save clubs that make up the top two steps of England’s non league system.

The Athletic report that all 68 sides are facing an unprecedented cash crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic which has forced the league organisation with no choice but to suspend the season.

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We’re coming towards the end of the month, so salaries and taxes were expected to be paid, however with there being no games of for much of March onwards, clubs are now struggling to come up with those costs.

With that in mind, there is also the matter of the players’ contracts, which come to an end on the 3rd of May.

Chief executive of the National League, Michael Tattersall will be taking the plan, invented by Dulwich Hamlet chairman Ben Clasper, to the Football Association this week, where he will tell them:

– Without an immediate financial package, most of his member clubs will be unable to pay their staff

– That £17 million is expected to cover the enforced losses and keep all the clubs afloat.

It comes after Barnet placed all non-playing staff on notice in “emergency measures to preserve the club”.

The move includes their current boss Darren Currie, but Barnet say he has a “long notice period” and will remain in charge if the 2019-20 season resumes.

The statement said: “Since relegation (from the English Football League), we have seen a general drop in crowd attendances of 50%, whilst general costs have increased resulting in operational losses of approximately £100,000 per month.

“The club budgeted for this cost in the hope of promotion but of course, at the end of April, all of our parachute funding will cease and we need to therefore make savings accordingly.

“In addition to these challenges, we have to consider the greater challenge of the impact that Covid-19 will have in the immediate and long-term future.

“In order to meet the challenges ahead of us, we will have to dismantle our existing cost structure and look to rebuild for next season with a much leaner cost base.

“We have therefore taken the difficult decision to put all Barnet FC staff on notice. This is to include all first-team coaching and backroom staff, the Barnet FC Academy and many of the operational staff across all areas of the club.

“Supporters will understandably want to know how this situation affects our head coach, Darren Currie. Darren has a long notice period within his contract and as such, should the season resume, he will remain in charge until at least the end of the season and possibly beyond.”

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Chairman Tony Kleanthous added: “Our greatest concern is that within the UK and across the entire world, people are losing loved ones.

“Our sympathies and thoughts go out to everyone affected but right now, I have to focus my attention closer to home and look at the impact it’s having on our club.

“It is my responsibility to ensure Barnet FC continues to survive and remains financially stable and therefore, I have had to make difficult decisions.”

The National League has written to all its clubs asking them to disclose how much money they could lose over the coming months after football was shut down because of coronavirus.

The league has already contacted the FA regarding the financial impact of suspending football matches and now “urgently needs feedback from clubs in order to estimate this impact”.

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Boreham Wood chairman Danny Hunter, criticised what he perceived as a lack of clarity from the government around the virus.

In a statement, he said: “I’ve listened intently to every piece of advice given by government, I’ve followed every piece of advice from every health authority and in truth we are getting no clear instruction or leadership.

“What does the government regard as social massing numbers – is it 50, is it 100, is it 200?

“If I get no guidance in the next day or so, I’ll have to make my own mind up based on what I read, what I hear, on common sense.

“If we cannot get any clear leadership from government, then I will have to make incredibly tough decisions that will affect people’s jobs and people’s lives.”

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