Next season set to start with Carabao Cup tie

The 2020/21 season is set to be kicked off with the first round of the Carabao Cup as the league campaign is likely to start in September.

Last week, the EFL and clubs met and two dates were pencilled in for the start of the 2020/21 season, which could see the league campaign start next month.

The first possible restart date considered by the EFL is August 29, only a couple of weeks later than the original start date.

If that date is not feasible, the EFL have a back-up date of September 12, a date which has been in the pipeline for some time now and is our understanding of the preferred date amongst many clubs.

A meeting is due to take place (Monday 13th), where clubs will vote on their preferred starting date, with the September option most likely.

There were rumours circulating that the EFL might postpone the Carabao Cup next season, which would ease some fixture congestion, travel and financial implications on clubs.

However, it is anticipated that the Carabao Cup first round will be played on the weekend before the first Football League matches.

Peterborough United co-owner Darragh MacAnthony believes that despite a few ‘dissenting voices’ the season will start in September, which would also mean some supporters could be present for the start of the campaign.

MacAnthony, who was speaking on his podcast ‘Hard Truths’ said: “I did ask Rick Parry (EFL chairman) if he was going to take the bull by the horns and announce a start date and issue the first set of fixtures rather than have another vote among clubs.

“And the impression I got from the meeting was that the season would start on August 29 or September 12 and if I was a betting man I would guess the date in September.

“There were a couple of the usual dissenting voices who don’t want to play until crowds come back, but they were told the TV deals would be in jeopardy. I understand where those chairmen were coming from, but it’s time to get the party started again and do what we are all paid to do and that’s play football.

“The EFL are working on getting some sort of crowd into grounds for when we start. It could be between 20-25% of capacity to start, but I reckon we could get up to 35-40% quickly and then 100% by January as there has been better news on the virus front.”

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