One of the Continental Cup quarter-final tie has not been played this week-end. Arsenal v Manchester City was postoponed due to a Manchester City player problem.
Here is the FA WSL statement regarding Manchester City’s alleged ineligible player :
“It is alleged that the player was not registered with the FA WSL, in its match against Sunderland on Saturday 15 August 2015.
It is therefore alleged that the club is in breach of League Cup Rule 5 (Competition Rule 26.5) for fielding an ineligible player.
The club has until 17 September to respond to the charge.
As a result, this weekend’s FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup Quarter-Final fixture between Arsenal and Manchester City (Sunday 13 September) has been postponed“
Here is the competition rule 26.5 :
“Only players registered for a Club shall be eligible to play for that Club in any one Season. A player shall not play for more than one Club in the League Cup Competition during any one Season. A Club playing an ineligible player shall be removed from the Competition, and be subject to a fine as decided by the Management Committee”
The players used by Manchester City on the day against Sunderland were:
Karen Bardsley, Lucy Bronze, Demi Stokes, Steph Houghton, Kathleen Radtke (Keira Walsh 57), Jennifer Beattie, Jill Scott, Isobel Christiansen, Toni Duggan, Nikita Parris, Daphne Corboz (Krystal Johnson 81)
If the charge is proven, Manchester City will be disqualified from the Continental Cup. Therefore you would think that Arsenal would go through to the semi-finals.
But what about the Sunderland game result ? Would it still stand? Would City get 3 points deducted giving them 12 points instead of 15 points.
Potential problem ramification :
It would not make any sense to have a player that is not registered for only one game only. I mean how could a player be registered for all the games she has played but one ?
So the possibility of having the same player guilty of not being registered for more Continental Cup games and League game would come into play.
This would come under the rules (P) (i) (ii)
“(P) (i) Any team playing an unregistered or otherwise ineligible player or players shall have the points gained in the Match deducted from its total, and may have up to three (3) points deducted from its total and may be fined and/or otherwise dealt with at the discretion of the Management Committee.
(ii) The Management Committee may, at its discretion, award the points available in the Match in question to the opponents, subject to the Match not being ordered to be replayed.
Also linked to this is the fine tariff 8 (P) (i)
|Playing an ineligible player in a match||£250 – £1000 And where the points gained in match will be deducted|
Note that we have no idea on the identity of the unregistered player, so we cannot check what other games she has previously played in.
Put it is this way, if the player was actually unregistered for one game only, it means her registration was not put through correctly at the time and has been rectified since.
But it would also mean that the player would have been correctly registered for the previous City games like the Arsenal away League game a week before or would have been deregistered between that Arsenal game and the Continental Cup game.
What are the odds of City deregistering a player for one game only ? It does not make sense at all.
So we are maybe talking here about a big can of worms, if City have used an unregistered player for more than that one game especially in the League.
Under the rules (P) (i) (ii), there would be a points deduction for every game played by this player while she was unregistered and also a fine.
For example, if the same player was not correctly registered for the Arsenal away League game, City would be fined, would have 3 points from their win deducted. Then they could face another points deduction and also see Arsenal gain some points as well.
The FA WSL 1 table might see some changes in the near future…or Manchester City might have done their job correctly and cleared which would lead to the quarter final game to be played as soon as possible after the international break.