Football: Cup ruling stuns Kelly

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The Independent Online
THERE were mixed reactions yesterday to the decision of the Football Association to order the Diadora League team Kingstonians and Peterborough to hold their FA Cup first-round replay again behind closed doors at London Road on Friday.

Following a precedent set in 1985 when Burton Albion's goalkeeper was struck by a missile during a third-round tie against Leicester, the FA ordered the replay after Peterborough had won 9-1, because the withdrawal of Kingstonian's goalkeeper, Adrian Blake, hit by a missile thrown from the terraces at London Road last week, had 'significantly influenced' the result.

Kingstonian's chairman, Barry Chauveau, said: 'We have had a fair hearing. Ideally we would have liked the match to be played at Kingston in front of our own fans. But we accept the FA's decision. They have to look at the wider aspects of the issue. Playing on Friday may cause some problems for our players, who are part- time and have other jobs.'

However, the Kingstonian manager, Chris Kelly, was more aggressive. 'All they are doing is penalising this club,' he said. 'We are a non-League outfit with players working five days a week. I don't even know whether I'll be able to get a team together.

'I've spoken to three players already who reckon they'll have trouble taking the day off, especially in the current climate. It's a day's wages to them and even if they do get the time off how will they be recompensed for loss of earnings?

'They should have given the game to Peterborough. OK, it wouldn't have been 9-1 had our keeper not gone off but it wouldn't have been far short. Mind you, the score could be higher next time. Peterborough can turn up on Friday like a normal day's training, give us a belting and then go home]'

Peterborough director Philip Sagar said that his club were 'gutted' by the decision which he called a 'travesty of justice'.

Peterborough were due to visit Plymouth in the second round on Saturday but the FA's decision means that the replay winners are likely to face a trip to the West country next Wednesday.

John Bond, the Shrewsbury manager, has been advised by his club and the police not to attend Saturday's FA Cup tie at Burnley because of threats from Burnley fans who blame him for the near- extinction of their club when he was in charge in the early 1980s.