LIVERSEDGE’S manager Jonathan Rimmington says he is “bemused” by the FA’s decision to void the Toolstation Northern Counties East League Premier Division, and fears it could be the demise of his club.

Sedge were sat second, two points behind leaders Staveley Miners Welfare and with two games in hand, when the league was stopped indefinitely by the coronavirus pandemic.

There was talk about deciding promotion and relegation on a points per game basis.

But on Thursday, the FA announced that results in steps three to six of the non-league pyramid (Sedge are in step five) were to be expunged, and the season was declared null and void.

The decision will now be put to The FA Council for ratification.

Assuming it is validated, Sedge have effectively been denied promotion and Rimmington said: “We’d have won it (the league) I think with the way we were playing (they were unbeaten since November).

“We’d have had a couple of hard games, and I suppose there are never any easy games, but I just think over 90 minutes, we’ve got a bit of everything.

“It’s disappointing (about the season being voided) and the players were pretty p***ed off on Thursday night when they heard the news, because they’ve put in seven months of hard work to get where they are.

“They’ll be ready to go again next year but our backer’s not happy.

“He might look at joining forces with other clubs in trying to take action against the FA.

“You’ve got the likes of South Shields (who are 12 points clear at the top of the BetVictor Northern Premier Division, which is step three) that have thrown money at getting promotion this season.

“We’ve put money into it, but nothing like them. They’ve spent thousands on wages and maybe up to around a third of a million.

“Clubs have already paid all their money out on the season (deals, prizes, sponsorship etc) so it’s a bit of a joke really.

“We’re disappointed about this season as players and staff but just think about the people who are backing these clubs.

“Sometimes you wonder whether the FA have much knowledge of non-league because a little club like us has now got a backer but he could end up walking away after this decision.

“That could be the demise of our club because unless you’ve got hundreds of fans coming down to home games (it’s hard to sustain everything).

“We would have no chance because you can’t just run out in front of 100 fans each week (with no backing from elsewhere) as you’ve got to pay staff, the bills, referees etc.”

Rimmington also admitted that he couldn’t understand why the FA had made a drastic decision so soon.

He said: “I disagree that they’ve gone and made a decision now. I think they’ve jumped in given that it’s only March. It’s miles too early.

“Personally I didn’t think we would play again this season, but why not wait until June and then make a final decision on the season’s outcome?

“Points per game, for us, would have been great, as we’d have won the league, but regardless, surely it’s got to be about fairness for all teams?

“I can’t believe what they’ve done, the FA, and I’m bemused by their decision to be honest.”

Giving his thoughts on the coronavirus pandemic in general, Rimmington said: “It is quite scary and now obviously the Prime Minister has got it too.

“It’s a strange time for all of us and I think it will be a good three, four or five months until it all passes. We’re living in a bit of a changing world.”

Amid the uncertainty surrounding Sedge’s future, there is some light.

Rimmington said that the club’s sponsor had committed to paying all staff, including the players, until (what should have been) the end of the 2019/20 season.