We are pleased to report that all but one vets team has committed to seeing the season through to a conclusion with the League, Cup and Shield competitions expected to be played to a finish. Veterans Secretary Graeme Wilson has confirmed the following:
So, what happens next?
Fixtures will be scheduled starting with Easter weekend (3rd / 4th April) for those who have declared that they're happy to play on these dates.
In a perfect world all matches will take place on a weekend however the reality is will not be possible for every game. I will do my utmost to minimise this for everyone as much as I can.
If your match is not taking place at the usual time (due to pitch constraints) please inform me immediately so I can update the website as this will have an impact on match official appointments.
Late fixture amendments
It is inevitable this will happen as we compress several rounds into a few weeks so please continue to check the website on a regular basis.
I hope you share our excitement at football returning, especially after the last few months. Let's get playing again!
Following the government’s announcement that grassroots football can restart from the 29th March the League Management Committee can confirm that fixtures will restart on Saturday, 3rd April.
Having taken all of the above (and more) into account, the League Management Committee has recommended to clubs the following:
All clubs were asked the following questions:
The answers to the above were factored into the decision making process and the he following points were among those considered in determining the way forward:
The decision to void the league season has been a difficult one for the League League. All suggestions on how we might complete the league season were considered fully. However, there were obstacles for every scenario that made those options unworkable.
Clubs have been asked to notify League Match Secretary, Eric Owen, by 15 March 2021, latest, of their intention regard to participating in football upon the restart. We will have to work quickly to make the best of the remaining weeks of the season, so any clubs not complying with this deadline risk not being included in the planned fixtures.
The Southern Amateur League kicked off a brand new Podcast this evening with the first ever episode featuring a discussion with the Representative Team Manager Bob Leeds about his time at Old Finchleians to joining the League Committee as Rep Team Manager.
Bob shared his stories about his first season in charge and his thoughts going into the 2007/08 season when the League went on to become National Champions winning the FA Inter League Cup that year.
We spoke to Daryl who is our new Social Media Officer at the Southern Amateur League and he had the following to say;
"Since joining the League as Referee Secretary a couple of seasons ago I have had a number of plans to increase the engagement online and away from the pitch. Taking on the role of Social Media Officer gave me the opportunity to do this by launching a brand new podcast and it only felt right to have Bob as our first ever guest! As President of the League and also as Representative Team Manager he had a number of stories to share, so much in-fact we have made it a two part episode.
We have some great guests lined up and eventually when we are able to get back out there playing football I will be ground hopping around the League reaching out to Managers, Players, Club Volunteers and 80% of the content we record will be done out at the clubs making the podcast more grassroots. Im looking for more people to get involved, come on and have a chat, egg on your upcoming opponents and in general just have a good laugh!"
The SAL Podcast is available on our website and from the Spotify app on your smartphone. To get involved drop Daryl an email - email@example.com
We are delighted to welcome EIGHT new clubs into the SAL fold this summer, four open aged clubs - including two with SAL 'previous' - and four more in the Vets Section - including the returning Southgate Olympic.
Bromleians played in the SAL from 1967-2002 before a club restructure led to their withdrawl to pursue a different path in the Kent County League. Catford Wanderers were members from 1929 to 1982, winning five SAL championships in that time. A brand new club, Hammersmith, is affiliated to the Latymer Upper School in Hammersmith, previously represented by the Old Latymerians who played in the SAL from 1945 to 2013 while Little Heath provide more young blood, founded in 2018 and making the jump from Sunday to Saturday football.
The Vets Section is pleased to welcome Battersea Boys, founded in 2015 and based at Colliers Wood United F.C. in Wimbledon. KOPA Vets, effectively a representative team from the KOPA League, founded in 1975 by Cypriot clubs based in north London, will be based at the excellent Walker Ground in Southgate. Livingstone RARA will call Mayfield Stadium in Thornton Heath home and have previously played in the Merton Vets League Last but not least, Southgate Olympic - full members of the SAL from 1958 to 2013 - will enter their Vets side - welcome back lads!
We hope all existing member clubs will make all eight feel welcome in their new league and the Management Committee look forward to seeing what they can do on the football pitch if and when we are allowed back out to play.
As of 6pm today the vote by member clubs on how to conclude season 2019/20 has closed.
The following option received the most votes
1. Competitions are brought to an immediate end with results expunged (i.e. without promotion or relegation occurring).
Therefore the 2019/20 league season is null and void.
If and when we are allowed to play football again we will look to try and complete the SAL Challenge Cups.
We are in exceptional times and this has been an extra ordinary vote. None of us could have envisaged that the season would end this way when we kick off in September.
At some point we will we be able to play football again but until then please can I ask that your take care of yourself and your families.
They, not football, are the most important things at this time.
It's looking like we won't be completing this season so there won't be any trophies to celebrate ?
But we can still mark the season by collecting team photos from as many teams as possible! ?
We are asking all teams to send us their team photos from 2019-20 and to tell us a little bit about themselves. Tell us what you would have won or why your team is a great team to play for, even if they weren't the best in their league.
We will use all of this to compile the 2020 SAL Standard - the League's annual review magazine. It's usually printed for the Awards Dinner but this year we're doing a PDF so we can have as many photos and articles as we like!
We regret to announce that the 2020 Annual Awards Dinner has been cancelled. The event was scheduled to take place on Friday 5 June at the Royal National Hotel in London. However, we have been informed by the hotel that, due to the ongoing coronavirus situation, they will be closed until further notice and that all bookings are therefore cancelled with immediate effect.
We trust that all players, referees and officers will understand the unprecedented circumstances of this situation and we look forward to announcing a date for the 2021 event as soon as it can be agreed.
Dear Club Sec,
Following the announcement by the FA the SAL League Management Committee can confirm that with immediate effect all SAL football has been suspended until further notice.
Over the next few weeks the League Management Committee will consider how best to deal with the remaining league and cup games and how (or if) that affects league promotion and relegation. Whatever decision we make we will let you know as soon as possible.
We are in unprecedented times and although we love the game in which we participate. The health and well-being of yourself and your loved ones is far more important at this time. Football comes a poor 2nd where your health is concerned. Please look after yourselves and your family.
Can I take this opportunity to thank all of our volunteers out there. Without your hard work and loyalty the SAL and amateur football would be a poorer place.
Polytechnic midfielder Tom Lancaster is out of the squad to travel to Jersey in the FA Inter League Cup in two weeks time after suffering ligament damage during training on Wednesday.
Manager Bob Leeds remains buoyant however despite the loss of such a key player. "We do have cover in our ranks, but we will certainly miss Tom’s involvement".
Looking ahead to the game which is being played on Saturday February 29th at the Springfield Stadium in Jersey, Bob added, "we know we have got to be at our best on the day. they beat the AFC in the last round who we lost to earlier in the season in the Argonaut Trophy". He went on to say "we are up against it, Most of the Jersey players are playing regularly at Step 6 with the Jersey Bulls in the Combined Counties League while all of ours operate at Step 7".
But if we can maintain the form which saw us overcome the Thames Valley Premier League and the Essex & Suffolk Border League then we have half a chance to progress into the semis.
Bob has a wealth of experience in this competition and has been involved in it seven times winning it once and losing in 3 semi finals..
"This years squad has a great camaraderie and we have had the opportunity to train together regularly despite coming from all four corners of London and the Home Counties and we aim to give it our best".
Details of seven of the nine SAL Challenge Cup finals for 2020 have been confirmed, including the appointment of referees and assistants.
Saturday 25 April at Norsemen F.C.
Referee: Andy DEMETRIADES
Assistants: Joshua EVANS and Gerald PORTER
4th Official: Abi OYELEE
Saturday 21 March at Old Finchleians F.C.
Referee: Lee ADDISON
Assistants: John FAITHFULL and Harry DEMOSTHENOUS
Saturday 21 March at Old Wilsonians F.C.
Referee: Laki KASTURIRATNE
Assistants: Jonathan GREEN and Aidan KEIGHTLEY
Saturday 7 March at Actonians Association F.C.
Referee: Jason ELLIOTT
Assistants: Derrick COE and Eric OWEN
Saturday 28 March at Kew Association F.C.
Referee: Jason KILBY
Assistants: William PRIOR and Vlad CHITESCU
Saturday 14 March at Civil Service F.C.
Referee: Bart BLOOMFIELD
Assistants: John SPOERRY and Patrick GRIFFIN
Saturday 14 March at East Barnet Old Grammarians F.C.
Referee: Oliver BIERMAN
Assistants: Andy BRAITHWAITE and Domingo CURBELO