REDDITCH United have been deducted three points with immediate effect following the fielding of two ineligible players in their league match at St Neots Town on February 20.
Defender Jim Mutton and striker Jazz Luckie were both sent off a fortnight earlier in the 1-0 defeat at King’s Lynn Town but the duo appeared in the 3-1 success at St Neots after, as reported by the Standard in recent weeks, the Reds claimed no notification of the start of the suspensions was received by the club or made available on the FA website.
However, this morning a Southern League statement was issued by secretary Jason Mills, which read: “Following the charge by the FA that Redditch United FC fielded two players whilst under suspension was proven, the Evo-Stik League Southern Board discussed the matter and has advised the club of its decision.
“The Evo-Stik League Southern Board found the club guilty of fielding two ineligible players on Saturday, February 20 in a league match at St Neots Town which Redditch United won 3-1 and as a consequence the club is to be deducted the three points gained in the match and is fined a sum in accordance with its fines tariff.
“The league has received written confirmation from the club that it will not be lodging an appeal to the FA and, therefore, the points adjustment will be made with immediate effect.”
Redditch manager Liam McDonald said: “We just want to draw a line under all of this now and concentrate on the football and picking up as many points as we can until the end of the season.
“An appeal would have dragged things on further and added to the confusion, which we feel would have been unfair on other teams in the promotion picture.
“It’s best we move on and look forward to hopefully a successful end to the campaign.”
The Reds, who drew 0-0 at home to both Leamington and Dunstable Town on Saturday and Monday respectively, remain second in the Premier Division table but are now above third placed Hitchin Town on goal difference only.
They are four points above sixth placed Weymouth in the highest position outside the play-off zone, with all teams from second to sixth having four matches remaining. The Reds travel to Dorchester Town on Saturday.