Godmanchester Rovers have declared themselves ‘deeply disappointed’ after being thrown out of the FA Vase.
The local club were removed from the national competition following a Football Association hearing at Wembley yesterday (Thursday).
Rovers were found guilty of fielding an ineligible player in their historic fourth-round victory over Sporting Khalsa on January 5.
Midfielder Chris Hyem played in that game at the David Wilson Homes Ground when he should have been suspended after being booked in tawo previous rounds of the Vase. That is a new ruling introduced this season.
Rovers do have the right to appeal the decision and are understood be considering that option.
A statement issued by the club last night read: “Godmanchester Rovers attended Wembley to answer the charges relating to the previous round of the FA Vase. The club’s legal adviser and a club officer attended in person.
“Although the FA were sympathetic and acknowledged that their notfications systems had produced errors relived upon by the club, they have nevertheless disqualified the club from further participation in the FA Vase which means Sporting Khalsa go through instead.
“The club are, of course, deeply disappointed at the decision. We will consider an appeal when the written decision has been received.”
It means Sporting Khalsa will now advance to the last 16 of the FA Vase and travel to former winners Sholing on February 2.
However, in a statement of their own, Khalsa admitted: “There is little satisfaction in progressing in this way.
“While Khalsa performed nothing like their best on the day, Godmanchester were undeniably the better side.
“Furthermore, Godmanchester were exceptional hosts and their fans were brilliant.
“There is absolutely no suggestion this was anything other than an unfortunate and cruel oversight – a situation anybody who has been involved in football administration will appreciate.”