Hebburn Town sweating over their Wembley dreams as coronavirus threatens to ruin their FA Vase hopes
Hebburn Town will face a nervous wait to see if the COVID-19 pandemic will bring an end to their dreams of walking out at Wembley Stadium in May.
The Hornets are preparing for next Saturday’s FA Vase semi-final first leg at Corinithian FC – with the second leg scheduled to take place at the Energy Check Sports Ground seven days later.
But the ongoing situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the football community into action over the last weekend.
Friday morning brought the announcement that the Premier League and EFL have postponed fixtures until the first Saturday of March, and the Northern League followed their lead just hours later.
The National League and Northern Premier League both took the decision to allow fixtures to go ahead as normal over the weekend – although both leagues saw a number of postponements as clubs confirmed that they had players and officials in self-isolation.
The Football Association are set to meet on Monday to discuss the situation and one of the topics up for debate is how to handle the remaining ties in their national cup competitions.
However, their hand could be forced should the government decide to put a ban on public events in an effort to combat the spread of the virus.
As Hebburn and Northern League rivals Consett await their fate, Hornets boss Kevin Bolam told The Gazette: “We trained on Saturday and the message to the lads was business as usual until we hear anything different.
“I am led to believe that all four clubs have spoken to the Football Association and requested that the ties should go ahead.
“Because of the current climate, you could understand if they tie are postponed.
“But it would be very disappointing for us all if they are postponed because we are so close to Wembley now.
“It’s out of our hands, we aren’t the decision-makers in this situation.
“All we can do is make sure we are ready to go if we get the go ahead.”