Frustration and optimism at Ilkeston as they’re hit by fresh league charges

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Ilkeston CEO Nigel Harrop says the club’s situation is still ‘too delicate’ for him to comment, despite facing league charges for failing to fulfill fixtures.

The New Manor Ground outfit were suspended by the Northern Premier League before the start of the season due to a breach of licensing rules regarding the payment of creditors.

A statement released by the league today confirmed that the club will face fresh charges because their first three games of the new season have not taken place.

And the club are yet to provide evidence that they have paid creditors.

It read: “The club’s licence was suspended following charges brought as a result of breaches of league Rule 40/Appendix F, a breach of rule 11 in relation to Football Creditors and a breach of licensing regulation 1.4. The club pleaded guilty to all charges.

“As a result of this suspension, in accordance with licensing regulation 1.6, “… the Club cannot participate in the Competition … until the expiry of seven days from the day of the default is remedied, unless otherwise agreed by the Competition. If the Competition refuse or withdraw a Licence then that club cannot participate in the Competition”.

“In order for the league’s board to review this decision, supporting evidence relating to payments made are required from the club. To date, none has been received despite several requests.”

“Consequently, the club’s licence remains suspended and, in accordance with FA rules, Ilkeston FC, has therefore been charged under league rule 8.6 with three counts of failing to fulfill a fixture.”

Rule 8.6 states that any Club failing to fulfill an engagement to play a competition match on the appointed date shall for each offence be liable to expulsion from the Competition and/or such other disciplinary action the Board may determine.

The charges will be heard by a League Panel next Wednesday.

Ilkeston released a statement late last week in which they claimed the problem was not one of their making and they were bound by legal issues from going into detail.

That remains the case according to Mr Harrop.

“It’s too delicate for me to comment to the press,” he said.

With tomorrow night’s game against Spennymoor Town listed as postponed on the league website, Mr Harrop says he’s ‘very optimistic’ that Ilkeston will get their season underway on Saturday when they’re due to host Ashton United.

First team manager Paul Holland admits he’s frustrated by the situation, but insists he has had no second thoughts about his position or his future at the club.

“I’m very frustrated but the lads have shown a first class attitude and I’m trying to keep away from everything and just preparing them for the next game, whenever that comes along.

“The lads are raring to go and I’m excited for the season to start.”

And despite concerns among supporters that players may start to seek employment elsewhere due to doubts over Ilkeston’s participation in this season’s competition, Holland says he’s still managing to attract talent to the club.

“Once they announce the suspension is lifted I can announce a big signing,” he said.

“We’re just waiting for it to be lifted.

“If it gets lifted in the next 24 hours I can make two signings.

“Things are in place and sometimes when your backs are against the wall you get a lot stronger.”