Shels crowned champs as St. Pats appeal rejected


Shelbourne were effecively crowned eircom League Champions this afternoon with the news that an FAI Appeal panel has rejected St Patrick’s Athletic’s appeal against a 15-point deduction for fielding an unregistered player.

The three-man Appeal Board reached their verdict last night, but the clubs were only officially informed this afternoon.

St. Pats, however, insist the matter is "far from over" because the League has yet to make public the findings of an investigation into the registration of players from other clubs and has warned that those found guilty of similar offences will also face deductions.

"We are convinced that there are irregularities in a majority of other clubs" a St Pats source told, "so we are unhappy about being singled out like this."

With regard to the rejection of their appeal, St Pats say they have not yet decided on their course of action, but that there is a strong possibility of them taking the case to arbitration and, if neccessary, court.

If the Inchicore club choses to go down that road, domestic football fans will have to hope the case is dealt with rapidly, since UEFA stipulate they must know the identity of the all country's European participants by May 29th.

In a statement the FAI Appeal Board also "drew attention for the need of the eircom League to put in place proper procedures to ensure that any similar problems do not occur in the future."