Tottenham will be permitted to have fans in attendance for their Carabao Cup final against Manchester City as part of a pilot scheme preparing for supporters to return to sporting events.

That final, the second FA Cup semi-final and the FA Cup final will serve as Wembley pilots for the government’s ‘Covid status certification’ scheme.

The plan is to enable the safe return of mass gatherings and indoor events as lockdown restrictions ease in England, with officials preparing a series of trial events over the coming months as they look to find a way for fans to return to sporting venues.

The FA Cup semi-final between Leicester and Southampton at the national stadium on April 18 will see football fans return for the first time since December, with 4,000 fans able to attend.

Spurs face City in the Carabao Cup final seven days later with 8,000 fans watching and the month-long scheme will conclude with the FA Cup final on May 15, when 21,000 fans will be attending.

The Football Supporters Association has welcomed the scheme but has criticised the authorities for failing to consult with fans, particularly over the Carabao Cup final.

The FSA said: “Fans across the country will welcome the partial return of supporters to stadiums, and we all hope the test events go well.

“However, our affiliated groups at Manchester City and Spurs represent fans who will make up that crowd – and neither they nor the FSA feel ‘consulted’.

“We have been informed what is happening but have had no input into the plans at this stage.

“Fans should be involved in the planning around these big Wembley games, we are the crowd after all, and we can make a positive contribution.”

Football Association chief executive Mark Bullingham hopes the test events can lead to there being full stadiums at this summer’s European Championship.

He said: “We are delighted to be hosting three test events at Wembley and are confident we can offer a safe environment.

“This is an important first step towards getting fans back, with the end goal of full stadia – hopefully by the end of the Men’s Euros.

English Football League chairman Rick Parry added: “The Carabao Cup is a prized asset of the EFL, so we are absolutely delighted to see supporters back for the showpiece final.”