DEAN KEATES would prefer to finish the current season but the Wrexham boss admits it is "highly unlikely" that his side will play their remaining nine games.

The campaign has been suspended until April 3 at the earliest because of the coronavirus outbreak but a National League statement says they have asked the Football Association to help "close the season as soon as possible" due to the pandemic.

Wrexham are currently 20th in the fifth tier, one point above the relegation zone, but it appears that the National League will officially finish the campaign in its three divisions now "for the purposes of player contracts".

A decision on promotion and relegation issues has not been made yet.

When asked whether he wants the season to finish now, Keates said: "Ideally not but the biggest stumbling block is contracts.

"You want to finish the season as strong as you can. It has been a disappointing season for us as a football club but what is going on at the moment is bigger than football.

"We were going into the last nine games looking for nine wins but whether we get to kick a ball again, that looks highly unlikely with what the statement is saying.

"We will have to wait and see. Nothing changes for us how the preparation is over the next few weeks while we are isolation. The players have got training programmes and we will just adapt to what gets fed down to us from the league."

A statement issued by the National League to clubs read: "As many of you will know, The National League held a Board discussion yesterday (Monday), which was the third such meeting in 11 days.

"The broad consensus was that our clubs wish for a decision to be made to close the season as soon as possible.

"The National League attended a further meeting last night (by video conference) with The Football Association, and The FA have been asked to assist us with making the decisions to officially postpone all remaining National League fixtures and to end the season as soon as possible for the purposes of player contracts.

"The National League is also working with the FA to define all reasonable and practical options for the determination of the 2019/20 season, and to provide guidance to clubs on dealing with player contracts, player registrations and the application of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

"We will continue to press for updates and will ensure that any further information is relayed to clubs as soon as it is received.

"The League is very aware that clubs are looking for answers and greater certainty, and we remain focused on delivering these in the most timely manner possible."