National League roundup: English fifth tier delivers drama
So there are actually leagues playing across the world, with fans too, and the highest level of action in the UK is the fifth tier of English soccer, the National League.
Five games took place in the National League, with decent sized crowds heading to stadiums as health advice in the UK has not been to ban large public gatherings, yet, over the coronavirus outbreak.
Games also took place in the sixth tier, the National League North and South, as the league decided games would go ahead on Friday despite the Premier League and English Football League calling games off.
Notts County beat Eastleigh 4-0 as Meadow Lane, which has a capacity of over 18,000, as a substantial crowd of 4,942 turned up to watch the Magpies move into third place in the table as they aim for promotion back to League Two at the first attempt. Kyle Wootton scored in each half, while Kristian Dennis and Callum Roberts were also on the scoresheet.
That crowd was easily one of the largest in western Europe on Saturday as professional leagues in England, Spain, France, Italy, Holland and Germany were all called off.
Elsewhere, Stockport fought back from 1-0 down to win 2-1 late on at struggling Maidenhead Town as they push for a playoff spot with Liam McAlinden scoring the winner with 14 minutes to go. Hartlepool drew 1-1 away at Sutton United to stay in the playoff hunt too.
Dover Athletic dropped points at home against struggling Chesterfield in a 1-1 draw as they equalized in the 89th minute through Nassim L’Ghoul after Chesterfield had taken the lead in the 80th minute through Tom Denton’s penalty kick. Plenty of games were well attended despite concerns from UK citizens about traveling and being in public places.
Below are the scores in full, as Halifax Town and Ebbsfleet United do battle to round off Saturday’s action in a key game for both as the former push for the playoffs and the latter need a win to try and get out of the relegation zone.
Notts County 4-0 Eastleigh
Maidenhead United 1-2 Stockport
Sutton United 1-1 Hartlepool
Fylde 1-0 Aldershot Town
Dover Athletic 1-1 Chesterfield
More coronavirus connections to soccer:
- Report: Liverpool could be crowned Premier League champions if the season is canceled.
- What are the options for the 2019-20 Premier League season?
- Emergency meeting called by Premier League for this Thursday.
- The Premier League has postponed play through at least April 3. Aston Villa’s chief executive called it “a very good decision” while Jurgen Klopp said we must “protect each other.”
- CONCACAF has suspended play for a month, while UEFA postponed all fixtures next week ahead of a meeting to discuss plans for both club and international European competitions.
- Chelsea’s Callum Hudson-Odoi is the first Premier League player to test positive for coronavirus.
- Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta tested posted for coronavirus and the players and staff at the club are self-isolating.
- MLS announced its 2020 season is suspended for at least 30 days.
- Three Leicester City players are in self-isolation after displaying symptoms of coronavirus.
- Real Madrid players in isolation and La Liga games suspended for the next two weeks after Real basketball player tests positive for coronavirus.
- Serie A is considering alternative ways to conclude its scudetto and relegation races, including playoffs or the non-awarding of a champion.
- Juventus confirm that their defender Daniele Rugani has tested positive for coronavirus.
- Olympiacos and Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis being diagnosed with coronavirus. Olympiacos and Forest have since confirmed all of their staff and players have been tested and their tests have come back as negative