Knebworth FC & Covid-19

We will update this page with further guidance

Updated 26 March 2020

The Football Association has now stated that all Grassroots Football is now finished for the 2019/20 season.

“Furthermore, we can now confirm that we have decided that all grassroots football is concluded for the 2019-20 season. This will allow the game to move forward and to commence planning for next season. Our County Football Associations (CFAs) will be supporting grassroots leagues over the coming days to determine how they should close out their current competitions.”

Full statement: http://www.thefa.com/news/2020/mar/26/national-league-system-womens-football-pyramid-grassroots-covid-19-update-260320

Updated 16 March 2020

Dear all,

The Football Association has announced it is “advising all grassroots football in England is postponed for the foreseeable future”. In accordance with this Knebworth FC is postponing all activities until further notice.

If you would like to borrow a football to practice with during this time then please get in touch with your coach to arrange this. A link is attached for some training ideas to keep you going – https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCvjByp5Kn0XTVLjQDAmAMtQ

We will be in touch as soon as we know we are able to restart. If there are any questions please speak to your coach or reply to this email.

Stay safe and well.

Knebworth FC

Updated 13 March 2020

You may have seen the announcement from the premier league, EFL, Womens Super League and Womens Championship that they have suspended matches until early April, including academy matches, and England’s next two matches have also been cancelled.

Our understanding is that the professional game has been suspended primarily due to concerns about crowds gathering, but also with some clubs self-isolating entire squads and coaching staff. The crowd concern does not apply at youth soccer.

In general schools remain open. We imagine that youth soccer could follow schools – if schools are shut then youth soccer may be suspended. We also imagine that Herts FA and the leagues are considering their position.

Parents should remain in contact with their coaches through the usual WhatsApp etc channels. Knebworth FC will follow guidance from the leagues and Herts FA.

Parents should please respect the government’s guidance to self-isolate in relevant circumstances and inform coaches if doing so. If you wish to make your child unavailable due to concerns over the Covid-19 virus then please also let your coach know.

Royston Crow – update at 18:30 this evening
TO  ALL CLUB SECRETARIES
Since sending this notice out first thing this morning the media has been full of  stories of the suspension of football  from various governing bodies from the Professional Game down to Grass Roots Football. Given this and the response from our Clubs the Management Committee has decided to postpone all League Fixtures for a period of two weeks, at which point the decision will be reviewed.
MHRML
 
Matches this weekend are to go ahead subject to both teams being happy to do so. Should either or both teams not wish to play given the current circumstances,  then there will not be any punishment to either team.

 

For matches scheduled for 21/22 March and 28/29 March. These games are suspended and there will NOT be any fixtures played for the next 2 weeks after this weekend.

 

The MHRML committee will be seeking guidance and advice from the government and local authorities, public health bodies and the governing football associations as to whether we can re-start matches from the beginning of April. We will, of course, be in touch with further information to let you know whether this is feasible nearer the time.

 

These are unprecedented times and I ask for your patience and understanding whilst additional matters such as the completion of the season, cup finals and presentation day are worked out by the committee over the next few days.

 

Now that the official position has been defined, please can you cease contact with league officials for the time being – aside from those cancelling matches with their age group fixture secs and ref sec this weekend – to allow us to take stock, assess and plan ahead accordingly.

 

HDL
The response to the coronavirus outbreak is a rapidly developing situation and in the interests of public health we urge all clubs and officials to follow the latest Government and Public Health England guidance.  Currently the advice from those bodies, and The FA, is that grassroots fixtures do not need to be cancelled as a matter of course.

During this time, there is clearly potential for football fixtures to be affected if players, coaches and parents become unavailable.  Some clubs are advising parents and players to stay away if they feel at all unwell.  This clearly is an unprecedented situation and requires a flexible approach from all parties.

Matches this weekend may go ahead provided both teams are happy to do so.  However, if either or both teams do not wish to play there will not be any punishment.

We will, of course, continue to actively monitor the situation and make a decision about the fixtures scheduled for 21 March early next week.

HGFPL

As the news is dominated by the Coronavirus and the impact on sports fixtures, the league is sending out this notification.

1. The League will continue as normal as will implement the following guidelines for the safety of the players and spectators.

2. Please make sure that ALL members of the team, players and coaching staff follow the Government Guidelines on hand washing.

3. NO RESPECT HANDSHAKES at matches with immediate effect. Teams can adopt other forms of respect if they feel the need.

4. NO USE OF TEAM WATER BOTTLES, please encourage players to bring their own drinks in labelled bottles, please make sure that they are kept with you through the match and taken home after, do not leave at the pitch side for others to clear.

5. ASK PLAYERS TO NOT SHARE FOOD SNACK, simple things like sharing crisps or sweets can also cause contamination so we recommend this does not happen.

6. Please read the HERTFORSHIRE FA CORONAVIRUS link below as
http://www.hertfordshirefa.com/news/2020/mar/04/coronavirus-update

7. The high profile Football leagues have postponed fixtures due to the number of spectators and environment that they generate. Please remember that we are very small scale to them and therefore if we follow the guidelines the players should be able to continue the game they love.

8. IF you have any confirmed cases of COVID-19 then please let your Club know and also advise your fixtures secretary. If you cannot fulfill a fixture as this has taken more than one player out, the league will postpone that match and deal with it as a committee.

9.The League will not be extended and this may have an effect on the divisional winners and runners up should fixtures not be completed. This will be for the committee to look at should the matter arise.

10. The League will be monitoring the fixtures and situation on a week to week basis.

Please do not email the League secretary with fixture queries, please just email your fixtures secretary and they will respond as soon as they can.

Royston Crow League guidance (13 March 2020):

Yesterday afternoon Boris Johnson addressed the Country on the Government’s strategy in dealing with the coronavirus and their advice to the General Public about on what measures they should take if they are concerned that they may have contracted the virus.

At the present time, the Government has stated that here is presently “no rationale to close or cancel major sporting events” and has resisted the option to close all the Schools, although this may change as the situation evolves.  The FA has stated that is actively monitoring and adopting Government advice and as a matter of good practice would recommend that Leagues and Clubs adopt the same approach.

Given the recent high-profile cancellations of major sports events across the world and here in the United Kingdom the League is aware of concerns expressed by Clubs about the continued playing of our own League & League Cup Fixtures.

The safety and welfare of the children who play in this League is our priority, and also recognises the concerns of Parents / Legal Guardians over the health risks to their children. Therefore, the Management Committee is allowing any Clubs/Teams who have concerns about fulfilling their fixtures because of the coronavirus to postpone these without penalty for the following 4-week period. We will then review the situation at that time based on the advice given by the Government and The FA unless the decision is not “taken out of hands” by them before that date.

Where Clubs/Teams make this decision they MUST agree this with their Opponents and then notify their Divisional Fixtures Secretary and the Match Referee that the fixture has been postponed. It is not acceptable that Clubs/Teams should try to pressurise their Opponents to play when they do not want to, and this should be reported to the League Secretary by the Club Secretary.

Clubs/Teams will no doubt wonder what the effect of loss of fixtures will have on the completion of the League programme and the awarding of Divisional Winners and our League Cup Finals?

The situation for the Under 7 to 11 Age Groups is that these are all Development Leagues, where the playing of matches is not mandatory and results are not published or Titles awarded, this will have no effect except children will not be playing games. Whereas, the Age Groups from Under 12 to Under 18 which are “Standard” result based Leagues it may not be possible to complete the Season and award the Winners and Runners Up positions.

Our League Season runs up to the 31st May and we cannot compel Teams to play after that date. Additionally, under FA Rules you cannot play League matches in June without permission from The FA. Whilst it is probable this permission would be granted it may be difficult for Clubs to obtain pitches to play on, and it may also mean that we are unable to stage our end of Season Tournaments for the Under 8s and 9s and complete our Cup Final Rounds for the older Age Groups.

Please note that this is not a decision we have taken lightly and no doubt it will not please everyone but feel that in the current period of concern and uncertainty it is the right decision.,,The Management Committee will continue to monitor the situation and keep Clubs advised of events. At the present time nobody can predict at what stage we will be with the spread and control of the virus and what Government Advice will dictate.

Please ensure cascade this message down to all your Club Members without delay.

The following link is from the Hertfordshire FA Website  http://www.hertfordshirefa.com/news/2020/mar/04/coronavirus-update

For those wanting to get the latest Government Advice please read the latest information about the situation in the UK, along with guidance for what to do if you think you’re at risk.

Go to NHSUK/coronavirus for information about the virus and how to protect yourself. Use the 111 online coronavirus service to check if you need medical help.

Herts Senior County League guidance (13 March 2020):

As a league we have a duty of care to our Clubs, players and officials, and we have taken guidance from our local FA and can confirm all games can still be played as scheduled this weekend 14th March 2020.

The decision made by the FA to suspend Premier and Football league games is mainly to control the crowds that will be following these teams.

Any clubs that do have players who are self-isolating and feel this will seriously affect their team selection can call myself or Norman Appleby for guidance and as ever we will be accommodating as possible.

As always all of our committee and club representatives are available if you have any further questions and we appreciate your support at this delicate time.