Neath relegated after licence appeal failure

Welsh Premier League

Neath have been relegated from the Welsh Premier League after failing in their licence bid.

The club appealed after their original application was rejected earlier this month along with that of newly crowned champions The New Saints and Rhyl.

TNS and Rhyl's appeals succeeded but Neath were refused both the FAW domestic and Uefa licences.

Neath's troubles mean that Carmarthen Town, who finished 11th in the league, are reprieved from relegation.

Neath called the decision not to renew their licence 'a travesty'.

"We feel that the club has done everything it could to satisfy the requirements and are bitterly disappointed," the club said in a statementexternal-link.

"There has been a major investment at the Gnoll to bring the facility up to the required standard stipulated by the League of Wales and Fifa, and to not have a team participating in the Welsh Premier and the possibility of European competition is nothing short of disastrous."

Rhyl were the first club to be relegated from the Welsh Premier because of a failure to gain a licence two seasons ago, but the Huws Gray Alliance runners-up have succeeded with their appeal this time.

The Football Association of Wales awards its licences based on clubs meeting five criteria under the headings of Infrastructure, Sporting (Youth and Coaching), Legal, Personnel & Administration, and Financial.

Neath have suffered financial problems recently despite a relative level of success on the field.

"We must now assess where the future of Neath FC now lies as we try to come to terms with today's ruling. This is a travesty," the Neath statement concluded.

MacWhirter Welsh League side Bridgend Town FC also failed to to gain an FAW domestic licence after having their appeal rejected.