A recent Women’s FA Cup first-round tie will have to be replayed in its entirety after a complaint was made about the size of the pitch.
Cambridge City beat cross-town rivals Cambridge United 2-1 on Sunday, but the two teams will now have to slog through it all again after United flagged up the unlawful dimensions of their hosts’ pitch.
FA regulations state that any pitch used in the Women’s FA Cup must be a minimum of 64 metres wide and 100 metres long.
City’s pitch, as claimed by United, who said they had it measured independently after the game, was just 58.7 metres wide and 94 metres long.
A statement from United read:
The match officials and home club were alerted of our concerns regarding the size of the pitch well in advance of kick-off. Unfortunately these concerns were not acted upon.
After being independently measured following the game, the Trinity Fields playing surface was found to be both too short and too narrow.
It (the pitch) was almost 14% below the minimum requirement and in our opinion, this is a major irregularity.
United duly lodged a formal complaint which was upheld by the FA, who have since decreed that the replay shall take place, this time at United’s Mildenhall ground, in two weeks’ time.
In a statement issued via their club website, City said they were “disappointed and surprised” with the decision.
As well they might be, especially as the original result was something of a cup upset, with City currently playing in the league below their local foes.