CLUBS in the EFL have been told they should aim to complete this season in 56 days – and that games will most likely be played behind closed doors.

A letter sent by league chairman Rick Parry to the member clubs has advised that no players should return to training until May 16 at the earliest.

It has also been reported that players have been advised to take holiday as quickly as possible, as the gap between the end of the 2019/20 and 20/21 campaign will be a short one.

Salford City, 10th in League Two, have nine games left of their campaign.

A letter from the EFL read: “We currently estimate that the League will require approximately 56 days to complete the outstanding matches in the season (including play-offs) and we are committed to ensuring that clubs are provided an appropriate notice period to ensure you are able to prepare operationally given the scale and impact of the postponement in place.

“The EFL board is currently working on the basis that end-of-season play-offs will take place across all three divisions as normal with two-legged semi-finals and a final, although no decision has been taken on the likely venue as it will depend on the circumstances at play at the time.”

“It is our working assumption at this stage that matches will be played behind closed doors when we eventually return and as part of our contingency planning we are absolutely mindful of the need to try and mitigate the cost of this to clubs as best we can.”

“Clubs should be advised not to recommence any training activity with players until May 16 at the earliest,” he continued.

“How and when we return (including training) is clearly subject to change and any decisions will be taken in conjunction with the government and relevant health authorities.”