Seaham Red Star to face Villagers again after FA Vase result expunged
Seaham Red Star are to be given a second chance to take on FA Vase opponents North Ferriby after the Villagers were proven to have played an ineligible player in the first meeting of the two clubs.
Mark Collingwood’s side suffered penalty shoot-out heartache in the third round tie last month after the two sides had battled to a 2-2 draw over an eventful 90 minutes.
The 7-6 shoot-out defeat looked to have brought an end to Red Star’s hopes of continuing their impressive run in the competition and sent their hosts into a home tie against two-time finalists West Auckland Town.
However, it has been proven that the Villagers midfielder Iwan Heeley should not have featured against Red Star after receiving two yellow cards earlier in the competition.
The Football Association have confirmed that they have charged the Northern Counties East League club with a breach of competition rule 15d, which is in relation to all players being qualified to take part in a fixture.
However, the governing body have also considered mitigation from North Ferriby and concluded that the club “did not know and could not have known” that Heeley was ineligible and suspended for the game against Collingwood’s side.
As a result, the FA have decided that they will not be removed from the Vase but will have to face Red Star once again.
Heeley will now be unavailable as he serves a suspension in the rearranged fixture which will be arranged when the FA Vase is able to recommence after the competition was suspended in December.
A statement released via North Ferriby’s social media read: “On the 19 December, 10 days prior to the Second Round tie, the FA confirmed Iwan Heeley was eligible to play against Seaham.
“On the 22 January, the FA acknowledged we had been given misinformation.
“As a consequence, the FA regulatory advocate confirmed the club had diligently taken all reasonable efforts to establish eligibility and were exonerated.
“In such circumstances, the competitions sub-committee deemed there was no grounds to expel North Ferriby yet ordered a replay.
“Adam Lowthorpe, CEO of East Riding County FA commented ‘I share your disappointment and anger, especially as the club couldn’t have done anything more, presented a strong case and were a wholly innocent party in all of it.
‘To add to the FA’s incomprehensible handling of this matter, it was further established that the FA’s competitions department had issued its ‘Third Round guidance literature’ to the wrong club.
‘A club not even participating in the competition!
‘As is the case with FA matters, their decision is final and binding."