Aylesbury FC heading for relegation due to FA regulations

Aylesbury FC say relegation is “unavoidable” as they cannot make their changing rooms bigger in time to meet new Football Association regulations.

They currently need to be a minimum of 12 square metres in the seventh and eighth tiers, but that will increase to 18 square metres by 31 March.

Clubs that fail to complete the work by the end of July will be relegated.

“The club unfortunately very soon realised that the deadline was simply not achievable,” Aylesbury said.

“Although all the people involved with the club are obviously devastated by this situation, we are even more committed now to ensuring the future of Aylesbury FC, taking a step backwards to once again move forward.”

Aylesbury – a point outside the relegation zone in the Southern League Division One Central – said that while their home and away changing rooms are “very close” to the minimum requirements, their room for match officials would need “major reconstruction” to meet the requirement of six square metres.

The FA wrote to a number of non-league clubs on the issue in October but say notice of the change was given in 2014, and clubs can apply for up to 70% of the funding for any work through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund.

Clubs must deliver planning permission, if required, proof of funding and a completed, enforceable contract to both the FA and their league by the end of March.

“The change was to accommodate increased squad sizes, more medical equipment and an improved environment for players,” the FA said.

“This is a mandatory requirement from those leagues and the vast majority have already achieved this.”

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