With Whitchurch Alport forced out of a weekend fixture, manager Luke Goddard and his backroom staff had the players into Yockings Park on Saturday to train hard ahead of this weekend’s home clash with New Mills AFC.

Alport haven’t played a meaningful game for a fortnight – despite a 90 minute run-out against Middlewich Town last night – and will be keen to get back on track after they lost their unbeaten league record to Litherland REMYCA last time out.

The club were hopeful of a welcome distraction from league duties with a trip to Highgate United in an FA Vase Second qualifying round last Saturday.

But, as exclusively revealed in last week’s Herald, Whitchurch were at the mercy of the FA – having made them aware via the North West Counties League that an admin fault had led to them innocently fielding an ineligible player, during the penalty shoot-out victory against Pershore Town.

The outcome, at the time of going to print, is still anything but cut and dried. The FA revealed that the game against Highgate would need to be postponed pending an enquiry with Alport needing to submit its observations by 5pm last Friday.

The options open to football’s governing body are thought to be expulsion as a worst case scenario, and a hefty fine plus an instruction to play the tie against Pershore again.

Although the club are in limbo, it’s understood that whatever the disciplinary panel rule, that Alport are unlikely to contest any decision despite having the right to appeal.

See the Herald for a football round-up.