Macclesfield players and staff say Crewe game will not go ahead

Macclesfield’s players and staff say their Sky Bet League Two match against Crewe will not go ahead, although there has been no official confirmation the game is off.

Last month, the Cheshire club were charged with misconduct by the EFL over their failure to pay players.

The first team had followed through on a strike threat during November, forcing Macclesfield to field youth team players in an FA Cup tie against Kingstonian, which they lost 4-0.

Macclesfield Town’s Moss Rose ground
Macclesfield Town’s Moss Rose ground

On Thursday, a joint statement issued on behalf of Macclesfield players and staff said the Crewe game would not be going ahead as scheduled.

“As a group, we’d like to inform the EFL and Crewe Alexandra Football Club that the game on Saturday won’t be taking place despite growing reports that is is ‘business as usual’,” the statement read.

“This is down to the fact that salaries have not been paid for last month.

“We have not trained as a squad since last Thursday due to the fact we have no training ground but, most importantly, the game can’t go ahead for the emotional and mental well-being of the players which is currently rock bottom.

“We hope that our own fans, who have been tremendous, Crewe fans and the whole of the football community can understand this decision with it being such an important month for us all on and off the pitch.”

Following the joint statement, Crewe said they were seeking more clarity.

“The club are aware of media reports surrounding Saturday’s fixture against Macclesfield Town,” a statement on Crewe Twitter feed read.

“We will continue to keep our supporters updated as and when we have been informed with more information on the matter.”

The PA news agency understands there has yet been no official decision taken either way as to whether Saturday’s match will go ahead.

It is understood the Professional Footballers’ Association is in constant discussions with Macclesfield’s players and the EFL over the matter.

The EFL board are set to discuss the matter at a meeting on Thursday afternoon. Macclesfield have as yet not directly informed the governing body about the fact the match will not be played.

Non-fulfilment of the fixture would trigger another disciplinary breach for the League Two club, who already face a charge of misconduct regarding their failure to pay players.

On Wednesday, a judge heard former Macclesfield manager Sol Campbell wants the club to be wound up because debts have not been paid.

Judge Catherine Addy was told that Macclesfield bosses owed a “very large” amount of tax and owed Campbell more than £180,000.

EFL Statement: Macclesfield Town charged with misconduct.

— EFL (@EFL) November 14, 2019

Tax officials have asked for the club to be wound up and Campbell supported that application, lawyers told Judge Addy.

The judge was given updates on the League Two football club’s debt problems at a hearing in the specialist Insolvency and Companies Court in London.

The case was adjourned for two weeks, with Judge Addy saying if “banking transaction problems” continued she wanted them to be explained in detail in writing.

Macclesfield have become the latest EFL club to experience financial difficulties, with Bury being expelled from the league in August and Bolton only surviving thanks to a last-ditch takeover.