EFL issue key update on the return of Sunderland supporters and reveal whether away fans can attend the League One play-offs
The EFL have confirmed that the green light has been given for fans to return to stadiums for the League One play-offs.
After the government announced that they would proceed to the next step of the roadmap out of lockdown on May 17, clubs can now prepare to welcome back supporters.
For Sunderland supporters, it will mean they can return to the Stadium of Light for the first time since March 2020 – albeit in limited numbers. Around 10,000 supporters are expected to be allowed to attend the second leg tie against Lincoln City on Saturday, May 22.
In a statement, the EFL said: “EFL Clubs will now determine with the relevant local Safety Advisory Groups the exact number of supporters that will be able to attend each fixture in line with national guidelines. Announcements on ticketing will be made by individual Clubs in due course.”
EFL chief executive, Trevor Birch said: “We are delighted to welcome back fans for the Sky Bet Play-Offs which will be fantastic for our competition and another significant step towards the EFL’s aspiration of having full stadia at the start of next season.
“Discussions remain ongoing with the Welsh Government in respect of the position in Wales, but all parties appreciate the importance of seeing fans return for these games.
“Over the course of the past 12 months, our Clubs have implemented stringent protocols and have worked tirelessly to overcome unprecedented challenges this campaign.
"Fans’ return at this climax of the season is just reward for Semi-Finalist Clubs who will now use their significant expertise in crowd management to ensure supporters can enjoy a safe and enjoyable return to their much-loved home grounds.
“We are thankful to all those who have helped ensure fans will be able to support their Clubs in important fixtures through the Semi-Finals and we look forward to welcoming fans in yet greater numbers at the Play-Off Finals.”
Sunderland AFC said on Sunday that they would confirm ticketing details and prices today (Tuesday, May 11).
The EFL have also revealed that no away fans will be able to attend play-off ties – while confirming that fans of clubs who reach the play-off final will be able to attend, albeit in limited numbers.