THE Football Association and the Government have given the go-ahead for grassroots football to return following the coronavirus pandemic.

Pre-season friendlies among non-league clubs can take place from August, with the non-league leagues hoping to return by September.

The 2020/21 seasons at Step One and Step Two, which incorporates York City, are set to begin no earlier than Saturday, September 5.

Step Three and Step Four, which includes Tadcaster Albion and Pickering Town, are aiming for a start to their campaign on Saturday, September 19.

League action in Step Four and Step Five, which includes Selby Town, are, like Steps One and Two, to return on Saturday, September 5.

An FA statement read: "We've been working hard over recent weeks to prepare guidelines for the safe return of grassroots football and, following Government approval, these can now be published.

"Football activity can take place with necessary modifications in place to mitigate the transmission risk of COVID-19.

"A return to competitive football should only happen once clubs and facility providers have completed the necessary risk assessments and comprehensive plans are in place."

Among the key points to consider from the FA's guidelines, are the need for people to self-assess for COVID-19 symptoms before every training session or match.

Facility providers should also ensure that they meet Government guidance, a maximum of 30 people, include coaches, are permitted to return to training and goal celebrations should also be avoided.