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The 1939/40 Football League season was in its infancy when Germany invaded Poland, marking the start of World War Two. Teams across the divisions had played just three games when it was announced that Britain had waged war on Germany one Sunday on 3 September 1930.
Similarly, large gatherings were banned but for very different reasons.
This time, it was a Friday afternoon when the EFL confirmed that the Championship, League One and League Two had been suspended on the back of the Coronavirus outbreak, and although the powers that be set a restart date of 30 April, nobody could’ve predicted what would unfold in 2020.
Last time football was suspended, Blackburn Rovers sat 20th in the First Division, with just a point on the board. Fast forward nine decades and Rovers attacker Elliot Bennett was the first player across the EFL to return a positive test,
The EFL set a restart date of the weekend of 20 June and while there was much doom and gloom in the sporting world, with major events cancelled left, right, and centre, Simon Weaver gave Harrogate Town supporters something to cheer about.
The West Yorkshire side won promotion to the EFL for the first time in the club’s history, beating Notts County 3-1 in the National League play-off final at Wembley Stadium. Harrogate joined Barrow, who went up as champions when clubs voted to end the season early, having dropped out of the league back in 1972.
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Across the A61, the EFL bid a fond farewell to Leeds United on the back of a 16-year stay. The Whites topped the Championship table, 10 points clear of West Brom in second place in a historic season for the club.
Marcelo Bielsa guided Leeds back to the promised land with two games to spare in his second season in charge and the city even named a street after the Argentine!