CLUBS have been given until the end of the month to submit their applications to fill the 12th spot in Super League for 2021, with a decision due to be made by December 16.

The timetable was revealed jointly by Super League Europe and the Rugby Football League as part of the process to find a team to take the place of Toronto, who pulled out of the top flight in July and failed in their bid for readmission.

The governing bodies will announce the full application process and the criteria against which applications will be assessed on Thursday, but say the window will only open to clubs who were in Super League in 2018 or 2019 or have finished in the top six of the Championship in that time.

That effectively means eight clubs are eligible to apply - Bradford, London Broncos, Widnes, Featherstone, Halifax, Leigh, Toulouse and York, who have all expressed an interest.

A statement said: “The RFL and SLE are conscious of the limited period of time for the preparation of applications but equally aware that the successful club will need time to prepare for the 2021 season.

“The application criteria will be aligned, where possible, with information and documentation already held by the RFL, or which applicant clubs should already have in existence.

“A decision is scheduled to be made by Wednesday, December 16, although that deadline could be extended in specific circumstances.

“A number of initial criteria for applicants have been agreed, including that the club must have been in the Betfred Super League or have finished in the top six of the Championship, in either 2018 or 2019.”

The successful club will receive £1 million in central funding, a reduced rate compared to the current 11 clubs in the competition.

The RFL says it will address with League One clubs the implications of the vacancy that will be created in the Championship.

The third tier will already have one less club than expected next season following the deferral of the entry of Ottawa Aces until 2022.