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Senior boss happy with FA shake-up
5:43pm Tuesday 15th May 2012 in Billericay Town & Concord Rangers: Conference South By James Colasanti
ROB Errington welcomed the latest FA recommendations on restructuring the non-league but says the plans in Essex will only work with an influx of teams from East Anglia.
The FA’s League Committee has said in its final report it has scrapped plans to reduce Step 5 leagues from 14 to 12, and that all divisions at that level must have a minimum of 20 clubs with a maximum of 22 from the start of the 2013/2014 season.
The plans will also mean that Step 4 and 3 divisions — locally Ryman One North and the Ryman Premier — are increased to 24 clubs.
There are also proposals that any side finishing bottom of any divisions at Step 5 will be relegated, regardless of any vacancies occurring through, for example, clubs folding.
Essex Senior League chairman Errington said: “They want us to have at least 20 clubs, and that is fine as long as they go through with allocating us some of the clubs that are in the Eastern Counties Football League, and those on the border like Haringey.
“If they are allocated to us then we would have enough clubs to be able to meet the plans for movements to higher levels like the Ryman, because they are trying to get 24 clubs now.
“So it is still a case of waiting and seeing, but I am still very hopeful we can stretch our constitution to do what the FA want.”
Errington also said he wants to see more progress made with talks to have a Step 6 division operating under the ESL, and he said at the moment he was heavily involved in making sure clubs met the ground-grading requirement.
He said: “I’m inspecting four grounds at this moment. I’m at London APSA today and we have to make sure that clubs get their grounds up to scratch by March 31 next year so that none of them fall by the wayside.
“But if we have a Step 6 division that will not happen. And I am confident the FA will do that, so I am happy.”