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King's Lynn Town chairman admits the club will go bust if National League solution can't be found




King's Lynn Town's National League season remains in the balance – and chairman Stephen Cleeve says the club will go under if they are forced to play with no fans and no other income stream.

League chiefs are due to hold an emergency board meeting this afternoon to discuss the implications of starting the season with no fans through the gates.

The National League, National League North and National League South are due to begin their seasons next weekend, which was set to coincide with the long-sought return of limited crowds to sporting venues.

King's Lynn Town chairman Stephen Cleeve.. (36853380)
King's Lynn Town chairman Stephen Cleeve.. (36853380)

But the announcement of tighter restrictions on gatherings, which the Government says could remain in place for up to six months in order to combat rising coronavirus case levels, has dashed those hopes.

Cleeve told his I Bought A Football Club Podcast on Wednesday: "As a football club, if we are made to start the season and go through it with no fans through the gate or no income stream then we will end up going bust."

Lynn's chairman doesn't expect any answers before the end of the weekend.

"I don't think there will be an outcome tomorrow as there is too much at stake," he said.

"My gut feeling is that we probably won't know any thing before the end of the weekend and it could even go into early next week."

Lynn will be one of four clubs represented by Barnet supremo Tony Kleanthous at today's board meeting with there being eight board member representatives in the top tier of non-league football.

Talks are continuing between the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, Premier League, English Football League and the National League to try to find a solution.

Funding from the Government and Premier League funding – which Cleeve has called for – is the only likely way the campaign will be able to kick-off.

At Prime Minister's Questions yesterday, James Wild, MP for North West Norfolk, urged the Prime Minister to look urgently at a Sport Recovery Fund following the recent announcement that the re-opening of large scale sport events fromOctober 2 has been postponed.

Mr Wild, who was at the Norwich City vs Preston Championship match that was part of the pilot events on Saturday, said: "This threatens the viability of King's Lynn Town FC, as well as other clubs and sports that rely on income from gate receipts and matchday spending by fans. Clubs need support to ensure their future at the heart of our local communities."

The Prime Minister assured Mr Wild that the Secretary of State for Culture, Media, and Sport is actively looking at solutions for clubs and sports.

King's Lynn Town are due to kick off their National League season – in front of the BT Sport cameras – against Yeovil Town at The Walks on Saturday, October 3.



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