BARROW Raiders club chairman Steve Neale believes the club could manage a socially distanced crowd if guidelines would permit it.

Mr Neale said the club could come up with a plan 'like supermarkets' for fans to remain two metres away from each other because grounds are a 'reasonable size' and 'crowds do not fill them'.

But he said the continuing suspension of action was 'frustrating' although the Raiders do not feel the same pressure to return as the Super League who have a TV deal with Sky Sports.

Super League clubs hope to resume their season in August and have set an ambitious target of playing in front of fans again as soon as October.

The competition was suspended in March as part of the wider coronavirus lockdown.

But three plans have now been drafted by the 12 teams, paving the way for a restart.

“We are still waiting for a message from the government as to what we can do next, so not much has changed in that regard," said Mr Neale.

“We are looking to see if it is feasible to come back behind closed doors in a financial sense.

“If we do, players have to be released from furlough and there would be the extra costs of testing and increased safety to consider, so we have to see if it is financially viable.

“From a Super League perspective, they have a TV deal with Sky that they have to come up with content for but we do not have that TV company pressure.

“From my perspective though it is frustrating as I am confident we could manage a socially distant crowd.

“The problem as well, is the contact for the players which is potentially a bigger risk with transmission to their family members when they go home.

“At this level of rugby, the grounds are a reasonable size and the crowds do not fill them.

"So we could come up with a system like in the supermarkets to maintain social distancing.

"I do feel the government are moving too slowly on outdoor sports.

“I am frustrated with this as like most other clubs we just want to get started again.

“There are two ends of the scale though with me who wants to get going and some who want lockdown to continue.”

There is still no clear date as to when League 1 could start again.

October 1 is the stated date for the earliest possible opening of the turnstiles for the Super League. Given the average attendances at most Super League and lower league fixtures and the comparative size of the stadiums involved, social distancing measures could potentially be met.