An Appeal lodged with the Football Association by Farnborough FC, against a Football Conference decision to deduct four points from the Club’s League Table score for fielding an ineligible player, was considered by a Panel of FA Councillors at Wembley on Monday.
The player’s ineligibility arose because the Club did not acquire an International Clearance Certificate (ITC) before fielding Medi Abalimba in six matches between 18 August and 4 September. The Club gained eight points from the games in which the player took part but exercising the discretion which the appropriate rule allows for cases involving an ITC, the Football Conference deducted only four points.
The Club appealed against the Conference’s decision on the Grounds of ‘severity of sentence’. Referring to the rule under which the charge was brought, the FA Appeals Panel emphasised it was a Club’s responsibility to ensure the eligibility of its players and, since the sentence imposed by the Conference was within the parameters of the permitted sanction, the sentence could not be considered excessive.
The Club’s League Table score, showing the deduction of four points, will be adjusted immediately.