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Willow Street Ender

Ryman Division 3

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The mandarins of Isthmian Land have decreed that the Premier and the two regional Divisions will each be comprised of 24 teams. Should Division 3 be scrapped and the remaining 16 teams be despatched down to the appropriate feeder leagues? The playing standard of Ryman 3 is no better than the feeder leagues. This is confirmed by the ease with which feeder promotees have, in the past gained immediate promotion to Ryman 2.

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The current plan of a regionalised Division one and a "non regionalised" division 2 makes no sense whatsoever I think the long term aim of the league and FA is to scrap Division 2.

If Ryman Div 2 falls much below the current plan of 16 then it does become unviable to play in it. If the league were serious about retaining it then they would have retained 22 in each division rather than boosting the top three divisions.<p>The scrapping of Div 2 will undoubtably come when the FA reorganise the non league pyramid. If it were to come sooner then I am not sure that the remaining div 2 clubs would want to go into the current feeder leagues. It may make sense if the politics could be arranged for some of the Southern league feeders (Eastern or Hellenic) to be made available.<p>However do we know that Div 1 will be 24. Grade B grounds are required. How many Div 2 clubs have not got this grade? will further clubs go up or will we run div 1 short and div 2 at more than 16?

The sooner the politics and confusion is sorted the better then we can all watch football with the knowledge that those in the top 3 places go up and the bottom 3 go down. I like it to be simple.

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I find it a little surprising that you are asking that question as you have a depth of knowledge of non league football. <p>However South Midlands league has at least 2 divisions and therefore more than 40 clubs (Hence ETFC going into the ESL as the easier option for climbing the pyramid) and I believe the Combined Counties is a similar set up to the South Midlands.<p>The one advantage the Ryman 2 will have is two guaranteed promo places rather than 2 places for 3 leagues. Ground grading requirements will apply to all 4 leagues.<p>I do say again I cannot see a long term future for the new Div 2 but think that the leagues and FA need to find a more imaginative solution than that proposed at present.

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on the subjects of grounds and promotion across pyramid , its seems that Maidstone United have not been promoted to the Southern league due to the fact that a seven year lease was required !
I think that ETFC may have to come up with a longer lease to gain promotion the Ryman League.

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It would be far better for the remaining 16 teams to go into the various feeder leagues where the standard is often higher, as evidenced by how well promoted teams have done as well as Vase results, there are also teams struggling at the foot of Ryman 3 every year conceding 100 plus goals. Its also ridiculous that this year the Ryman div 2 has had no promotion/relegation, effectivly making it a season of friendly matches!

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I am not sure if the clubs in Division two would agree !
I feel that the best way forward would be have a league like the Athenian in the pyramid below the Ryman but above the feeders where the ground gradings are not as tough but the standard of football etc is still better than the feeders , yes sides have gone straight through division three , but the bottom end of the SML,CCL and The ESL are fairly weak.

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