Football: Leading clubs to play in new Welsh league

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The Independent Online
Wrexham, Swansea and Cardiff will be playing in two championships next season one in Wales and one in England. The three Football League clubs will take part in a new Welsh Clubs Championship along with Merthyr Tydfil and the four top teams from the League of Wales.

The Football Association of Wales hope that the winners will be granted entry into one of the European competitions. "The Welsh Cup lost a lot of its appeal when the League clubs were unable to compete," the FAW president, Brian Fear, said. "This new championship will give it a tremendous boost and if the winners can secure an extra European place it will be an additional bonus."

However, League of Wales clubs are threatening to withdraw from their competition because of the move. "This is a disgrace," the Caersws chairman, Garth Williams, said. "If this new competition goes ahead it will destroy the League of Wales. The chosen clubs will attract all the best players."

n Gillingham ended Walsall's hopes of clinching a place in the Second Division play-offs by beating them 2-0 last night with an impressive performance capped by goals from Iffy Onuora and Steve Butler. Walsall lost their captain, Derek Mountfield, after a collision and had Mark Blake sent off.