Chaos as women's league suspended

Reporter:

Gavin Grosvenor

WOMEN’S football in North and Mid Wales has been thrown into turmoil.

A row between the Football Association of Wales (FAW) and North Wales Women's League over the inclusion of a development side has now led to the suspension of all fixtures.

Title chasing Llanfair United and the returning Llanidloes Town have joined the rest of the 12 club league in limbo.

The suspension represents the latest chapter in a long and bitter dispute between the FAW and the North Wales Women’s League (NWWFL) which has refused to accept Rhyl Football Club’s development side despite the club successfully appealing to regional and national associations.

The league has refused to accept the ruling and insisted its establishment 16 years ago was to cater for clubs looking to field senior sides and not development or reserve teams.

It has led to the North Wales Women’s League calling for a separate reserve league to be established.

Rhyl currently operate a side in the Welsh Premier Women's League and hoped to enter its reserve side in the North Wales Women’s League.

However the league has staunchly refused to accept their membership, citing the relegation of the club’s senior side from the Premier League would lead to two sides from the same club competing in the North Wales League.

In the meantime the row threatens to undermine the league which could fail to be completed this season and the development of the women's game across the region.

The league is understood to be threatening to sever its association with the FAW.

The North Wales Women’s League and Football Association of Wales did not respond to a request for a comment but the latter confirmed its stance in other media.

An FAW spokesman said: “All fixtures are off until the league adheres to the rules and regulations of the Football Association of Wales.

“The FAW and North Wales Coast Football Association support Rhyl, who have won appeals and are eligible to begin their fixtures with immediate effect.

“There will be no league fixtures until this situation is resolved.”

Email:

gavin.grosvenor@nwn.co.uk

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