Published: 14:09, 30 January 2021
| Updated: 14:10, 30 January 2021
Welling chairman Mark Goldberg has urged their fellow National League clubs to finish the season.
The Wings sit bottom of National League South after taking just eight points from 11 games. It means they’ve still got a staggering 29 games to complete in less than four months.
With multiple games postponed due to Covid-19 outbreaks and a change in management earlier this month which saw ex-Gillingham boss Steve Lovell take over from Bradley Quinton, it’s been a turbulent time at Park View Road.
The easy option would be for Goldberg to call for the season to be null and void – but he’s having none of that.
Goldberg said: “We feel privileged to be granted elite status as a club playing in the National League South and extremely grateful for the grants provided to date by the government authorities, the Football Foundation and the National League to enable us to continue to play behind closed doors up to now.
“After lobbying to become an elite club, it is our opinion that we need to act as such and respect with integrity the outcome of the current offer and with the utmost appreciation accept the loans being made available to help us finish this season with pride that we are part of an elite competition and so fortunate to be able to provide something positive to our local communities in this most difficult time.
“It is our belief that to not finish the season now would be inexcusable having accepted the grants to date and the government funds could have been provided to much greater causes in the event our season now becomes null and void.
“We only hope that other clubs in our own National League South and those that share our privileged status in the National League and the National League North see fit to share our sentiments.
“Whatever the outcome, we send our very best wishes to all our colleagues and supporters in football to be well and stay safe during this difficult period.”
Clubs in all three divisions across the National League are expected to take part in a vote at the start of this week to determine whether to continue the season or to call it null and void.
National League South and North have been paused for two weeks while the league continued talks with the DCMS over future funding but it was stressed again this week that further money will be provided initially as loans, albeit payable over a long period of time at a fixed low rate.
The expectation is that clubs in National League South and North will vote to null and void their season, with 16 clubs across the two divisions already publicly putting their name to a statement calling for the season to be halted.
But even if the season does continue, there is unlikely to be any relegation from National League South if the Isthmian League season is declared null and void at step 3.