OSADEBE BLUN­DER DOESN’T DAM­AGE THE GILLS

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Joshua Peck

LEAGUE ONE high-fly­ers Gilling­ham have been fined £4,000 af­ter ad­mit­ting field­ing an in­el­i­gi­ble player on the open­ing day of the sea­son.

Em­manuel Osadebe signed for the Gills in July and fea­tured in the first game of the sea­son, a 4-0 vic­tory over Sh­effield United, but it turns out that he was not cor­rectly reg­is­tered.

The Kent side be­lieved the 19-year-old’s last club was Tot­ten­ham and, as such, con­sid­ered his sign­ing to be from within the do­mes­tic player reg­is­tra­tion sys­tem – but the mid­fielder’s pre­vi­ous reg­is­tra­tion was at Ir­ish club Dun­dalk.

The FA did not process the Gills’ doc­u­men­ta­tion, de­spite the Foot­ball League reg­is­ter­ing Osadebe as a Gilling­ham player, and there­fore it was not known that Osadebe re­quired in­ter­na­tional clear­ance.

Gills then se­lected Osadebe for the clash with the Blades de­spite the ab­sence of writ­ten con­fir­ma­tion from the FA that it too had reg­is­tered the player.

The fine re­ceived is sus­pended for 12 months and while some may say the Gills should have been given a points de­duc­tion, the Foot­ball League ex­plained the rea­sons for le­niency.

A spokesman said: “While Gilling­ham have ad­mit­ted that Em­manuel Osadebe should not have been se­lected for the match with­out all of the nec­es­sary con­fir­ma­tions be­ing in place, it is also fair to say that the FA should have iden­ti­fied this is­sue ear­lier. Had it done so, this breach of reg­u­la­tions would never have oc­curred.

“Given the ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances of this case, the Com­mis­sion has ruled that the club should not find it­self sub­ject to a points de­duc­tion.”

Mean­while, Cam­bridge United have been fined £7,000, of which £5,000 has been sus­pended, for field­ing the in­el­i­gi­ble Ryan Led­son in their 1-0 de­feat against Craw­ley last month.

MIX-UP: Em­manuel Osadebe

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