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SBD Global/December 13, 2012/Franchises

Bradford City Regains Place In FA Cup After Winning Appeal Over Ineligible Player

Bradford City's Gary Jones, center, celebrates with teammates James Hanson, right, and Carl McHugh after beating Arsenal Tuesday.
League Two side Bradford City has been reinstated into this season’s FA Cup after a successful appeal against a decision to remove them for "fielding an ineligible player in the second-round tie against Brentford," according to Mark Cue of the LONDON TIMES. The FA’s appeal board agreed with the club’s assertion that "expulsion as a punishment was too harsh." Consequently, Bradford has instead been fined £1,000 ($1,612), and will be allowed to play Brentford in a rematch at Griffin Park next Tuesday for the right to face either Bury or Southend United in next month’s third round (LONDON TIMES, 12/12). In London, Adam Shergold reported Bradford played Newcastle United loanee Curtis Good in the 1-1 draw with Brentford on Nov. 30, "breaching the competition's rules." A Bradford statement read, "We deeply regret our breach of the rules and are currently reviewing our procedures to ensure no repeat of this situation" (DAILY MAIL, 12/12). Bradford was "thrown out of the competition" by the FA last week because it did not receive written permission in time to play Good (HALIFAX COURIER, 12/12).

UNEXPECTED WIN: The BBC noted a statement from the FA said, "The Appeal Board accepts that the failure to obtain and submit the acceptance from Newcastle United giving approval to play the player by noon on the match day was a genuine error and recognised that corrective action was attempted as soon as the omission was discovered and that no attempt to deceive was made." Before the verdict was announced, Bradford Manager Phil Parkinson told BBC Radio 5 live that he "did not expect the club to win their appeal." Parkinson: "Normally in these hearings the FA stick to their guns" (BBC, 12/12).

CASHING IN ON CAPITAL CUP: The BBC also reported Bradford Dir of Operations Dave Baldwin believes that progressing to the Capital One Cup semifinal has "safeguarded the club's financial future." The Bantams "pulled off one of the greatest shocks in League Cup history" with a penalty shootout win over Arsenal on Tuesday. Baldwin told BBC Radio Leeds: "It has secured our long-term future. Two televised ties will bring the club in an extra £1M ($1.6M) in revenue." He added to BBC Radio 5 live: "The game last night has made a massive impact on the club's deficit. Half of the overspend has gone in one game. Of course, it's only an estimate at this stage, but it's a massive boost for the financial position of the club." Baldwin said that the club, which is fourth in League Two, was "projected to overspend on wages" by £600,000 ($967,000) as they "push for promotion" to League One (BBC, 12/12).

NIGHT TO REMEMBER: In London, Ewan Murray wrote on the GUARDIAN's The Sport Blog, Bradford has been "propelled back into the public consciousness on account of Tuesday evening's League Cup exploits over Arsenal." Parkinson said after his team's record ninth penalty shootout win in a row, "It was a night to remember. We want to put this club and this city back on the map -- football clubs can do that." Football also "revels in shock results." Arsenal's annual wage bill is £143M ($230M) a year while striker Marouane Chamakh earns £2.6M ($4.1M) of that by himself. Bradford's last reported annual salary was £1.2M ($1.9M) a year (GUARDIAN, 12/12).
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