Wick Academy boss Gary Manson reckons the Highland League season will have to be extended if they have any hope of completing it.
As it stands, the league calendar is due to run until April 17, but no team has yet played more than three games, with Strathspey Thistle yet to play a fixture in the Highland League.
The division is currently on pause as part of the shutdown of football below the Scottish Championship and recently there has been less optimism about getting the season finished.
The Highland League also has the added factor of the pyramid play-off to consider. Last year, despite naming a champion in Brora Rangers, the league were denied a representative in the play-offs when they were scrapped.
Usually, they are required to finish before the end of April to allow time for the pyramid play-off to take place.
Wick boss Manson said: “I’m not very optimistic, to be honest. The only thing I can see is, with Leagues One and Two being paused, if they want to go finish their season then we should be able to finish ours and complete the play-off games for the pyramid system.
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“That’s the only stickler. In years gone by there was no promotion and I imagine, if that was still the case, the league would have been called already. But the leagues are in a tricky situation; they don’t want to give up their place in the pyramid system, so they’re going to have to try their very best to finish the season so the play-offs can take place.
“When that’s going to be? I have no idea. No matter what they’re going to have to push the season out – normally they would have to finish by the middle of April. I would think the end of May would be a more realistic date. If you’ve got the play-offs at the end of that, you’re going into June.
“It’s a nightmare. I don’t envy Rod (Houston, league secretary). He’s in a tricky situation where he’s got so many people to please and, as you know, you can’t please everybody.”
Manson’s side have only played two league games this campaign, with a further two in the Scottish Cup.
Wick were also one of several clubs to see crowds back this season, with the league opener against Buckie Thistle and the Scottish Cup tie with Musselburgh Athletic played in front of spectators at Harmsworth Park.
The Scorries traditionally have a healthy home support and Manson was pleased they got to see some sort of football this season.
He added: “Back in November, it felt like life was sort of getting back to normal before the second spike happened and having a crowd was part of that. Then the second wave hit, worse than before, so it was a bit of a novelty in respect of the two games.”