LIVERSEDGE FC and Halifax FC Women have revealed that they recently parted ways on “good terms”.

The latter had been tenants of Sedge since the start of the season in a groundshare that was expected to have positive implications on both parties.

However, a mixture of bad weather and congestion of fixtures at the Leading Edge Clayborn Stadium has resulted in the playing surface taking a battering, which has meant multiple fixtures have had to be postponed.

On Sunday February 25, Halifax’s game with Hashtag United in the FA Women's National League Cup semi-final at Liversedge went ahead and this proved to be the catalyst for the split between the two clubs.

Despite several representatives of Sedge and Halifax, the latter known as Brighouse Town until this season, staking their claim for the game not to go ahead after viewing the sorry state of the pitch in the days leading up to kick-off, the FA overruled their verdict to ensure the game kicked-off as planned.

It resulted in Liversedge’s blockbuster derby-day clash against Ossett on the following Tuesday being postponed, with the pitch deemed unplayable following the semi-final contest only two days before.

Director of Liversedge, Sharon Osbourne, commented: “The club have had a history of games getting called off for a long time now because of the pitch and what it can take.

“The weather has played a big part in that, obviously. Unfortunately, as a club Liversedge FC are not allowed to have a pitch inspection until the day of their league matches. However, for this cup game that Halifax were playing, as Hashtag United were travelling down from London, we had to complete the pitch inspection the day before along with the referee.

“We made it clear to them that we didn’t want the game to go ahead on Sunday because the pitch was in no state to be played on, particularly because we didn’t want it to affect our game against Ossett on the Tuesday.

“Unfortunately, we were overruled, and the FA wanted it played. This game involving Halifax and Hashtag should have never, ever gone ahead.”

Osbourne added: “With the number of games we’ve already had postponed this season, we just can’t take the risk of something like this happening again because home games are where a big chunk of our income comes from as a club. So, that’s the bottom line really, we needed to bring the groundshare to an end, so we did.

“We have no animosity towards Halifax Women, it’s just that we need to start looking out for our club, Liversedge FC. I wish them all the look in the future.”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Halifax FC Women play in the National League alongside teams such as Newcastle United and Burnley FC Halifax FC Women play in the National League alongside teams such as Newcastle United and Burnley FC (Image: Ray Spencer)

Rob Mitchell, head coach of Halifax FC Women, commented: “Obviously, I was disappointed when I heard the news because we had an agreement in place to use their ground. However, I totally understand Liversedge’s side of things because it’s clear that the pitch hasn’t been able to cope with the number of games being played on it, particularly in this weather.

“We have tried to be accommodating, like when we played one of our County Cup games offsite and then a league game at Marley just to give the pitch that extra bit of rest, but I suppose the magnitude of games being played on Sedge’s pitch is overwhelming.

“I do think the situation could have been avoided, not by either club, but the FA because they wanted the game to go ahead in a semi-final of a national competition. Who knows? If we didn’t play that game and Liversedge got to play against Ossett on the Tuesday, then maybe the decision to move us on wouldn’t have needed to be made.

“We leave on good terms, and I totally understand their position in this situation.”

Discussing Halifax’s next move ahead of finishing their FA Women's National League North campaign, Mitchell said: “Luckily, I’ve got some good contacts within the semi-professional men’s game and Yorkshire Amateur have been kind enough to allow us to play the rest of our home games at their ground for the rest of the season.

“We’ll see how it goes and if it does work out positively, then maybe we can look to reach an agreement with the club for a groundshare next season.”