HEREFORD FC said that 'player availability' was one factor in their decision to decline a late change in date for the AFC Telford United fixture.

As scheduled Hereford will play Telford behind closed doors on the final day of the national lockdown on Tuesday, December 1.

Telford, who sit in a Tier 2 area, wanted to delay the fixture 24 hours to allow fans to attend.

However, Hereford said they were unable to accept the request and also the National League have started they are not currently moving fixtures.

A statement from Hereford said: "When coming to this decision we have taken a whole host of factors into consideration, including the availability of our players who, being part-time, have other commitments outside of the usual matchdays.

"It is also worth noting that the Football Association and National League are yet to clarify what restrictions will be in place and that the National League themselves ‘shall not be authorising any movement of fixtures to accommodate spectator access’.

"Taking all of this into account, we feel that sadly, it is just not feasible to agree to this change in date at this moment in time.

"We understand the frustration this naturally creates but we are sure our fans will expect and want us to field our strongest squad for every match fixture."

In a statement released earlier today AFC Telford United said they were 'baffled and frustrated' that the request had been refused.

They said: "We are very confident that the New Bucks Head is ready to allow supporters to return which it has been since our safety advisor group passed the stadium inspection back in October.

"We have already seen other clubs in the National League North, South, National League and EFL working together to rearrange games by 24 hours or more so that supporters, sponsors and families can watch their teams again so it baffles and frustrates us that Hereford are unwilling to move one game by 24 hours.

"The football club will now prepare to welcome supporters back to the New Bucks Head on Boxing Day when we welcome Chester."