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Westport Utd unhappy with FAI decision


Ger Flanagan

AFTER learning of the FAI Junior Council’s decision to dismiss their ‘protest’ regarding the ineligibility of an Aisling Annacotty player in their recent FAI Junior quarter-final defeat, Westport United are now considering an appeal against the governing body’s decision.
It emerged last week that Westport United had lodged an official protest with the FAI against the Limerick outfit over fielding an alleged ineligible player in the recent clash at United Park, but it was dismissed on Thursday evening at a hearing in Abbottstown, Dublin.
Aisling Annacotty, who play in the Limerick District League, beat Westport United 2-1 after extra-time in Westport last Sunday fortnight, but if Westport were to be successful with an appeal, they could be reinstated back into the competition.
The Mayo News has learned that Westport United are now considering an appeal against the initial dismissal over what the club term a ‘lack of due process’ in their protest hearing last week.
When contacted by this newspaper last night (Monday), Westport United confirmed that the club committee is meeting early this week with a view to making a decision as to whether or not to appeal the protest decision in line with the FAI Rules Appeals procedure.
The Mayo News understands that Westport United have written to the secretary of the FAI Junior Council, Denis Cruise, relaying their concerns in relation to the refusal of the FAI to provide information and documentation that Westport United have requested, both before and after the protest hearing.
They are also understood to have raised concerns that the FAI have breached its own rules in refusing to provide the information requested.
It’s understood that Westport United have ‘serious concerns’ in relation to what club officials regard as ‘a lack of due process’ afforded to it before and during the protest hearing.
The club have until the end of the week to decide if they want to appeal the decision or not.
Coincidentally, a protest was also lodged last week by Dublin outfit Sheriff YC against Regional United who knocked them out in the quarter-finals of the FAI Junior Cup.
Sheriff YC were reinstated at the expense of the Limerick side at the hearing in Abbottstown over an irregularity concerning an International Transfer Clearance.
Back in 2005, Westport United lodged a successful appeal against another Limerick side, Carew Park, after they were found to have fielded a suspended player in their penalty shoot-out victory in the FAI Junior Cup semi-final.
After a long, drawn-out appeal process, the FAI ordered the game to be replayed with Westport United winning the re-fixed match 1-0.
Westport United went on to make history and won the FAI Junior Cup for their first and only time against Waterford Crystal in the final.

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