TWO-THIRDS of the EFL could go out of business in the next 12 months if the game cannot sort out its finances.

That’s the stark warning from Huddersfield Town chairman Phil Hodgkinson, who believes football in the lower leagues faces a bleak future unless it can reorganise quickly during the current lockdown.

Clubs face a vote this week to decide whether remaining games will be played this season – and Championship sides look set to do just that.

But concerns over the cost of playing games behind closed doors have prompted many League One and Two clubs push for the season to be ended, enabling them to stay in hibernation to minimise costs.

It is not yet known when or how next season will restart – which presents a massive dilemma for clubs who are at the thinner end of football’s financial food chain.

“The season should be completed when it’s safe to do so and there should be relegation and promotion,” Hodgkinson told The Yorkshire Post.

“Everyone has worked hard; we are three quarters of the way through the season.

"We are on board with that, but there’s a much bigger issue that needs to be discussed in tandem with that.

"We are being asked to fund costs to cover the season, testing and other additional things, which is absolutely fine – I have no issue with that at all!

"But there are clubs further down the pyramid, who aren’t in the same situation as us, being asked to do the same thing, but there’s no solution in place to tell them whether that extra expenditure will take them further down the road to going out of business; that’s the reality of it.

"Let’s not pretend that football didn’t cause this problem, it did. Football has created the position we are in. What we have now is the opportunity, with this COVID-19 pandemic, is to get football back into a place where it’s run better.

"Football has caused this problem and football should fix it. If this isn’t solved, you could be looking at 40, 50, 60 clubs in the pyramid ceasing to trade within the next six to 12 months; that’s how big this problem is."