Walruses And Bits Of Paper

I suppose it was a bit too much to expect, for the Ryman League’s executive committee (the members of whom, I can only presume, look rather like the gentleman to my left here) to make anything like a common sense decision. If you didn’t already know, AFC Wimbledon have been fined £400 and docked a jaw-dropping eighteen points for failing to obtain international clearance for former Cardiff player Jermaine Darlington earlier this season. Firstly, a quick summary of what happened. Darlington was released by Cardiff City during the summer. He was signed by AFC Wimbledon whilst injured, and brought into their first team upon his recovery. After their FA Trophy defeat at Gravesend last month, during which Darlington was booked, it became apparent that AFC Wimbledon had not gained international clearance from the Football Association of Wales to sign him. Now, you might think that they didn’t need to – after all, Cardiff play in the Championship, the FA Cup and the League Cup – but you’d be wrong. All Cardiff, Swansea and Wrexham players are registered with the FAW, so effectively any signing from these three clubs (and the senior non-league clubs from Wales that play in English leagues, such as Newport County) are classed as international signings. The FA threw AFCW out of the FA Trophy, and the Ryman League today announced that they would be docked...

Read More