Portuguese FC and Beeches apply to rejoin JFA league
JERSEY PORTUGUESE FC and Beeches Old Boys are in talks with the Jersey FA about re-joining the Jacksons Combination, with a third new club also looking to affiliate.
Portuguese were suspended from the league for one year in 2017 after they were found guilty of failing to control their players during an incident against St Ouen, resulting in them breaching the terms of an existing 30-month suspended sentence for a number of similar offences. However, the JEP has learned that the terms of their reinstatement included the settlement of over £1,500 in fines and administration costs, which are still outstanding. Officials of the club at time of the suspension cannot return with any club, including Portuguese, until the balance paid off.
Beeches, meanwhile, resigned from the league in 2016 having been unable to attract a sufficient roster of players to fulfil their commitments. Established in 1924, Beeches are five-times league champions and two-times Upton Trophy winners, the last of each coming in 1961 and 1958 respectively. The club hope to re-join the league in Division I, if they can attract enough players, or they may opt for the over-35 veterans league.
The third team looking to join for the 2020/21 season will be known as Dragoes de Jersey, or Dragons – made up predominantly of players from Trinity ‘C’, who were one of three teams from the parish club to withdraw mid-way through last season due to financial difficulties. The team finished third in the old Division II in their last full season in 2018/19 and will be looking to rejoin in Division I, which now features reserve and C teams alongside Sports Club of Jersey.
Should each team be successful in their applications, it will give local league football a timely boost. The Combination has endured a number of resignations in recent seasons and has attracted some criticism for not doing enough to safeguard its member clubs or make it easy for new clubs to form and join.
‘It’s exciting to hear from these potential new clubs and also to learn that a number of existing ones are also looking to enter more teams next seasons as well,’ said Tim Pryor of Jersey FA. ‘Growing the game in what has been uncertain times would be a real boost to the game domestically when it’s eventually safe for us to restart competitive action. We’ve also had a positive start to the player registration window with a good number of players signing on for their clubs despite not yet having a confirmed start date for the JFA Combination League.’
Club secretaries for new and existing clubs have until Tuesday, 30 June to apply for affiliation to the league.
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