by Scott Thornberry - 21st June 2012
Darlingtons appeal against the punishment dealt out by the FA has be rejected on all counts. So it is Northern League for us, as to further implications, I guess that will come out later today.
Darlington 1883 have released the following:
Following the appeal hearing at Wembley Stadium this morning, DFC 1883 Ltd are disappointed to announce that the FA have dismissed the appeal on all counts.
This means that the club will be playing in level 5 of the football pyramid next season and will not be allowed to play under the name Darlington FC.
Laura Drew of 1883 Ltd "We are bitterly disappointed by the decision of the FA, we feel we had a strong case and to be honest I am gob-smacked that the appeal was unsuccessful. The appeal panel upheld the original decision and will not recognise the football club as a continuation of the football club that completed last season. This is a position that we heavily dispute but we have to accept where we are and fight back from here. I am Darlington fan first and foremost and this hurts badly, but I know there is a future and we need to focus on that now."
Denis Pinnegar, 1883 Ltd Chairman continued "This is not the outcome that either the fans or the interim board wanted, but at least we now know where we are and what needs to be done to get this club back to where it belongs. I know there is nothing else that could have been done in order to get the result of the appeal changed, the FA have decided that we are to be viewed as a new club and as much as we can challenge that and argue the case we have to now accept that. There has been a lot of uncertainty around this club in recent times, and the fans deserve better. Its our job now to work with the fans, get the fans to back the club and get the club back playing in Darlington and at the highest level we can, as soon as we can."
Craig McKenna, project director stated "It is the fans that I feel for, they deserve better than this and they have been let down by Mr Singh. It is clearly his actions that have lead the club to the circumstances we are now in and I fail to see how anyone could justify the blatant disregard he has shown to the football club and the fans. It is the fans club now and if that is the only positive thing to come out of this then it is a positive thing well worth having."
Martin Gray, team manager said "When I took this role I knew the club had been placed at level 5 and as disappointing as this appeal outcome is, it doesn't change the fact that we have a job to do and we will do it."