Shrewsbury Town lodge EFL application to welcome 1,000 fans against Northampton Town this weekend

Shrewsbury Town hope to welcome 1,000 supporters to Montgomery Waters Meadow on Saturday after requesting to be an English Football League pilot.

Montgomery Waters Meadow could welcome its first crowd since March this weekend (AMA)
Montgomery Waters Meadow could welcome its first crowd since March this weekend (AMA)

The governing body contacted EFL clubs at 11.30am today giving them a two-and-a-half hour window to register an application to become a pilot event for the safe return of fans.

And Shrewsbury moved quick to formally lodge their interest in what could be a huge boost to the club ahead of the weekend’s first home League One clash against Northampton Town.

Speed is of the essence and there is precious little time to finalise plans, but Shrewsbury are working in the background in the hope they are selected by the EFL.

The club are hoping for a swift decision from league bosses so they can confirm plans and remain hopeful the Meadow’s 24-acre site, with measures put in place in recent weeks, will be suitable to safely welcome 1,000 fans.

Should they get the go-ahead, the club will have to adapt initial plans, which were to open all four stands, with now just up to 1,000 spectators permitted.

Town’s bid will then need to be approved by the Safety Advisory Group before Saturday’s fixture can be officially confirmed as a pilot.

The club must decide how they will elect which 1,000 of the 2,700 season ticket holders, Sovereign Club members and box holders will be permitted.

Shrewsbury are understood to have been surprised by this morning’s update from the EFL, given the extremely quick turnaround to ensure everything is in place for the fixture, which is in four days.

The Meadow club had long been hopeful of being elected as a pilot for fans’ return.

Culture secretary Oliver Dowden is meeting with sporting bodies later this week to discuss the planned return of spectators from October 1.

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