Potential extended play-off proposal ‘gaining legs’ as Gills demand a place at the table

The EFL are meeting on Wednesday to try and decide on suitable proposals ready for League One clubs to vote on at the end the week, with MacAnthony’s eight team play-off gathering pace.

MacAnthony’s proposal came after last week’s meeting between the clubs which showed a real split between continuing or ending the season. The Posh owner’s proposal would consist of an eight team play-off, with the winner joining Coventry and Rotherham in the Championship.

If the current standings are deployed for MacAnthony’s eight team play-off tournament, Town would scrape in, with Wycombe Wanderers, Oxford United, Portsmouth, Peterborough United, Sunderland and Doncaster Rovers taking part in the mini competition.

MacAnthony’s co-owner Stewart Thompson has backed these plans, and said it is an idea that is starting to gain legs among those clubs at the top of the table.

“The solution is gaining legs with top 10 owners,” he tweeted.

“I can totally understand why, after the top 10, you don’t actually care. A play-off like this is way more fair than weighted points per game or points per game.

“It’s an easier straight up formula, because what do you weigh? Home, away, league placing, form, etc?

“Listen, if the bottom of the league knew their tab at the pub was being covered, they’d keep drinking.

“We’d all be playing like the Premier League and Championship.”

The only real decision would be who would fill the remaining tenth spot and therefore take part in the unique tournament.

Gills boss Steve Evans believes an unweighted points-per-game calculation to settle the table, which is the EFL’s preference, would see his side leapfrog Town into tenth position. 

“The first thing to make clear is that the EFL will have promotion and relegation throughout, Rick Parry, the league chairman, made that clear when he addressed us managers in League 1 last Friday,” Evans said to Kent Messenger.

“Further, to get everyone up to level games then average points per game needs to be added to those playing catch up with fixtures.

“That would take us into the top 10 and be a part of these matches. In the event that happens I would trust we will give a good account of ourselves and perhaps even win them.

“No big clubs can get a free wildcard, if you don’t have the points you’re not involved.”