Vanarama National League member clubs have voted in favour of introducing six-team play-offs to the fifth and sixth tiers of English football from next season.

The proposal was tabled at the league’s annual general meeting, with 18 of 24 National League clubs backing the move.

It means teams finishing between second and seventh place in all three National League’s divisions will be involved.

Games will be one-legged, with teams in fourth and fifth hosting the seventh and sixth clubs in a qualifying round.

The winners of those matches will then move into the semi-finals before a final – at Wembley for the National League and a club ground for the North and South divisions.

Teams that finish second and third will progress straight to a semi-final at their home ground, in theory giving them an advantage as they will play one match fewer and have a home tie.

Previously in non-league’s top flight, the four clubs finishing directly below the automatically promoted champions played two-legged semi-finals before a one-off final.

Four National League clubs rejected the proposal, with two more not voting.

Speaking when the plans were initially put forward, the league’s chief executive Michael Tattersall said: “The format involves the same amount of matches as now. With six clubs competing, it will increase the interest levels.”

Forest Green won this season’s National League promotion final, beating Tranmere Rovers 3-1. at Wembley.

FC Halifax Town and Ebbsfleet United won the National League North and South finals respectively, after one-match semi-final victories.

Image: Reuters Media

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