Banbury United have been deducted four points for fielding an ineligible player.

The Evo-Stik League South Premier Division Central club say the FA decision concerned ‘an administrative error relating to the loan of Ravi Shamsi from Maidenhead in August 2018.’ The deduction sees Banbury slip down a place from 10th in the league table, below Leiston.

The club went on to say the following:

The loan was confirmed and the registration lodged and accepted by the Southern League on the 2 August. However a copy of the loan form is required by the FA prior to the player playing. This was sent at the same time but did not arrive at the FA until 16 August after the games against Rushall Olympic and Halesowen on 11 and 14 August.

The issue obviously relates to an issue at the beginning of the season. In August the FA charged us with a breach of their regulations to which we responded.

The FA issued a warning against the club rather than any tangible penalty.

After The FA ruling the club were charged by the Southern League in September and responded at that time. The club were not notified of the decision of the league until 14 November. The Southern League ruled that there was a breach of regulations and the points won in those games should be deducted.

The club appealed the decision to the FA, based on the penalty being excessive for an administrative oversight and that the club did not have a fair hearing by the league. The latter was due to, what we believed to be, the league not following its own regulations in its charge letter to the club.

The appeal was heard on Monday 14 January at Wembley with both ourselves and representatives from the league present. the FA agreed that we had not had a fair hearing and so our appeal in respect of this was successful. However under the FA appeal regulations the FA can still consider an issue such as this and they ruled that the penalty as stated in the league regulations should be applied. We were notified of this decision yesterday, Monday 28 January.

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