THE suspension has been extended, but the good news for the more than 10,000 players registered under the Western NSW banner is that there is a "100 per cent" intent to see football played in 2020.
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On Wednesday afternoon Football Federation Australia advised that due to the evolving coronavirus situation, the temporary suspension to sanctioned grassroots football competitions and associated training would remain in place until at least May 31.
It is an extension from original suspension until April 14.
It leaves approximately 10,500 players who had planned to compete in Western NSW competitions uncertain what their season will consist of.
But development manager for regional football Andrew Fearnley said Football NSW will work hard to see there is a season 2020.
"It does impact a lot of players from Lithgow, Bathurst, Orange, Dubbo, Young, Parkes, Forbes, Mudgee, Cowra and Bourke and Cobar plus towns in between," Fearnley said.
"Obviously the restrictions on social gatherings and social sport by the government mean that whilst we can make considerations ourselves, we are also going to be affected by what those government restrictions are.
"Sadly we've had to move the current football suspension. We need to see things improve before we can return to sport.
"[But] Our intent is to play football as soon as we can, as soon as it is safe to do so."
Fearnley said he and other officials are working on a number of different options for the season.
That includes local club football competitions, the Western Zone Premier League plus National Premier Leagues competitions the Western representative teams contest.
The National Premier Leagues competitions had commenced before the suspension was put in place with two rounds completed.
Fearnley admitted competitions such as state championships may not go ahead, saying the focus is to "maximise grassroots football."
"The situation has obviously changed fairly quickly lately, but we just keep working on different scenarios we can do to get football in," he said.
"Whether it's running longer and deeper into the year or whether football is a shorter season in 2020, the intent is just to play football, 100 per cent.
"We want to get our NPL sides playing and our Western Premier League as well - first year into it and we can't get it off the ground at the moment - those things will be the priority and anything else above that will have to be if it's worth doing or possible to do given the time frames we have.
"For example the Western Youth League would normally be end of April and all of May, but that's wiped out.
"We've just got to look at when we return if that's feasible to do or for 2020 the formats need to be different."
Football Federation Australia will continue to communicate material updates in the lead up to May 31.
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