Providing Ascension Football League financer Richard Ferguson gets the final approval tomorrow from the relevant authorities, the 2020 season will get going on Friday with a double-header minus spectators at the Phase II Recreation Ground in La Horquetta from 6 pm.
In the opening match, the 2019 League Two winners San Fernando Giants, will kick-off League One action against former powerhouse Central FC while two hours later, reigning League One champions, Defence Force will do battle with Terminix La Horquatta Rangers FC.
Matches will we played on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only.
A sources close to the league operations told Guardian Media Sports on Monday that, the 2020 season of the Ascension Invitational Football League (AIFL) has gotten the approval of the FIFA-appointed Normalisation Committee which is headed by businessman Robert Hadad, who is the chairman to kick-off and is now awaiting financial word from Ministry of Health and Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs, as well as the Sports Company of T&T (Sportt) officials with regards to safety and health measures that need to be put in place due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The league which is now in its second year and will see competition in three divisions, as compared to two last year, also got approval from the Confederation of North, Central America and the Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF).
Both the League One and Two Divisions will comprise ten clubs each, while League Three will comprise of clubs from the Northern Football Association, Eastern Football Association, Tobago Football Association, Southern Football Association, Central Football Association, and the Eastern Counties Football Union.
According to a source, approval from CONCACAF was sought because the League was expected to culminate into a regional play-off among the Caribbean's top clubs, with three teams from T&T, and one each from Barbados, Guyana and Jamaica.
The Ascension League is expected to mushroom into an 'Island Cup' play-off, however, this will be withheld this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The source pointed out, "There will be prize monies totalling $594, 000. All referees will also be paid.
The tournament will also mark a return of Friday Night Football, as there will be live coverage of a double-header every week in the top tier, on regional Sports Television Network SPORTS MAX, from either the Diego Martin Sports Complex, the La Horquetta facility, which is the home ground of Rangers and the newly refurbished Police grounds, at the St James Barracks in Long Circular.
It is understood that attempts are also underway to have the live Friday night matches streamed on the internet as well as shown live by a local television station
Meanwhile, W Connection Football Team, a multiple-times winner of the T&T Pro League will take no part in the Ascension League.
The 'Savonetta Boys' as they are popularly known, did not take part in the tournament last year, while AC Port-of-Spain which is formerly North East Stars have entered this season, after also opting out last year.