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‘Well done to Marcus Evans, he’s fighting’ - Posh chief MacAnthony on Ipswich owner

PUBLISHED: 15:50 08 June 2020 | UPDATED: 15:51 08 June 2020

Marcus Evans and Darragh MacAnthony, the owners of Ipswich and Peterborough, both want to finish the season on the pitch. Picture: ARCHANT/PA

Marcus Evans and Darragh MacAnthony, the owners of Ipswich and Peterborough, both want to finish the season on the pitch. Picture: ARCHANT/PA

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Peterborough United chairman Darragh MacAnthony has praised Ipswich Town owner Marcus Evans for pushing to get back on the pitch ahead of tomorrow’s crunch EFL meeting.

A decision is expected to be made on the fate of the League One season tomorrow when, in all likelihood, a majority of clubs will vote for the campaign to be ended and decided using a points-per-game system.

Both MacAnthony and Evans have made it clear they want to finish the season on the pitch, with the Blues putting forward a proposal for an expanded play-off competition which will be considered at tomorrow’s meeting.

“Ipswich have put in an amendment which would see 10 teams fighting for three places,” MacAnthony said on his Football Club Chairman - Hard Truth podcast.

“Well done to Marcus Evans, he’s fighting to put something across.”

There is still no decision regarding the futute of League One. Picture: PAThere is still no decision regarding the futute of League One. Picture: PA

MacAnthony is backing Tranmere’s proposed amendment (full details here), which is based on a margin-for-error system and uses a detailed statistical analysis to create a formula which sees only sides running away with promotion or adrift from safety at the bottom of the league go up or down.

MORE: How Tuesday’s crunch EFL vote will work as clubs consider Town’s play-off plan

The proposal would create an expanded eight-team play-off tournament, and the Peterborough chairman has laid out how Ipswich could make it in despite currently sitting in 10th.

“Coventry would go up and would get their promotion. Rotherham would go into an eight-team play-off race, from second down to ninth,” MacAnthony said.

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“Teams could opt in or opt out. Doncaster are in the mix and, according to their local journalist, they don’t have the appetite to play so if they were to give their slot up, Ipswich would get it instead.

“Then you’d have eight teams, two groups of four, playing off against each other.”

MacAnthony believes the proposal would make perfect sense for clubs throughout the leagues.

It remains to be seen when Ipswich Town will next play a game.    Picture: Steve Waller    www.stephenwaller.comIt remains to be seen when Ipswich Town will next play a game. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com

“There is a way to do this which suits everyone – the Tranmere proposal really does suit everyone,” he said.

“Fair play to Mark and Nicola Palios (Tranmere chairman and vice-chairman). It brings in a lot of teams who can fight to get promoted, saves clubs who should not be relegated. It’s a thoughtful solution and it shocked me so many came out straight away and said no. It baffles me.

EXPLAINED: Tranmere’s proposal to the EFL

“Right now as it stands, everyone seems to be saying no. But hopefully people will see sense. Teams who don’t want to play football don’t have to play and those who do can. It suits everyone.

Paul Lambert's Blues will drop to 11th using a points-per-game formula. Picture: STEVE WALLERPaul Lambert's Blues will drop to 11th using a points-per-game formula. Picture: STEVE WALLER

“It’s the right thing for football and the right thing for football clubs to do. It’s a vote for football and that’s what I will be doing.”

The EFL’s preferred approach, in the event of the season ending early, is for final standings to be decided using a points-per-game formula. That would see Peterborough miss out on the play-offs and Ipswich slide to 11th in the table.

For any amendment to be passed, it will need to gain a 51% majority in tomorrow’s vote.


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