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League One & League Two clubs vote to end seasons early

The League One and League Two seasons have both been ended early after a formal vote by clubs on Tuesday.

Coventry City have been crowned League One champions
Coventry City have been crowned League One champions

Both tables will be settled on points per game, while promotion, relegation and the play-offs all remain.

Coventry and Rotherham go up from League One, while Wycombe replace Peterborough in the play-off places.

Swindon are League Two champions, but “ongoing disciplinary matters” mean it is not yet certain who will drop out of the EFL and into the National League.

Stevenage are bottom, but they could yet be reprieved after Macclesfield Town were handed a fresh EFL misconduct charge on 1 June.

The Silkmen, who are three points above Stevenage, have already had 11 points deducted for previous rule breaches this season and have a further suspended two-point penalty hanging over them if they transgress again.

Both votes were passed by an “overwhelming majority”, according to the EFL, who also confirmed that the League Two play-off final would be held at Wembley on 29 June.

No dates have yet been confirmed for the League One play-offs.

Elite football in England has been suspended since 13 March because of coronavirus, with only the Premier League and Championship so far committing to resuming their seasons later this month.

Who is set to go up & down from League One?

Clubs in League One had previously been divided over whether or not to bring the season to an early conclusion.

Initial talks stalled after at least six sides, including Sunderland, Portsmouth and Ipswich Town, said they wanted to continue the campaign.

However, the new regulations – proposed by the EFL board and approved by the 71 member clubs earlier on Tuesday – meant just 51% of teams in any given division needed to agree on ending a season early.

The points-per-game system does throw up one significant change to the League One table, with eighth-placed Wycombe Wanderers replacing sixth-placed Peterborough United in the play-offs.

Wycombe will move up to third because they have at least one game in hand on each of their play-off rivals.

  • Promoted: Coventry City (champions), Rotherham United
  • Play-offs: Wycombe Wanderers v Fleetwood Town, Portsmouth v Oxford United (dates tbc)
  • Relegated: Tranmere Rovers, Southend United, Bolton Wanderers

What’s the situation in League Two?

While the top half of League Two is largely unaffected, Swindon Town have been named champions after leapfrogging Crewe Alexandra because the Robins have a game in hand.

The situation at the bottom has been complicated by the Macclesfield charge, however, which relates to late payment of wages in March and for “failing to act with utmost good faith in respect of matters with the EFL and for breaching an order, requirement, direction or instruction of the league”.

In a statement, the EFL said “due to ongoing disciplinary matters, the final placings cannot yet be confirmed”.

As it stands, this is how promotion, relegation and the play-offs will finish:

  • Promoted: Swindon Town (champions), Crewe Alexandra, Plymouth Argyle
  • Play-offs: Cheltenham Town v Northampton Town, Exeter City v Colchester United
  • Relegated: Stevenage

Wembley to host League Two play-off final

Following Tuesday’s vote, it was announced that the League Two play-off semi-finals are to begin on Thursday, 18 June – two days before the Championship season is set to resume.

The final, which will take place on Monday, 29 June, is to be held at Wembley as originally planned. All games will be held behind closed doors.

Thursday, 18 June: Semi-final first legs

  • Colchester United v Exeter City (17:15 BST)
  • Northampton Town v Cheltenham Town (19:45 BST)

Monday, 22 June: Semi-final second legs

  • Exeter City v Colchester United (17:15 BST)
  • Cheltenham Town v Northampton Town (20:00 BST)

Monday, 29 June: Final

  • TBC

Timeline: How did we get to this point?

  • 10 March – Last games played in Leagues One & Two
  • 13 March – EFL suspended until at least 3 April
  • 19 March – Suspension extended until end of April
  • 26 March – All football below National League expunged
  • 9 April – Season ‘can be finished in 56 days’
  • 22 April – National League clubs vote to end regular season
  • 23 April – Clubs write to EFL over salary cap introduction
  • 5 May – EFL clubs face ‘£200m hole’ by September
  • 15 May – League Two sides want to end season, League One undecided
  • 9 June – League One & League Two clubs formally vote to end season

BBC News

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