Halton Moor FC faces cup ban after fighjting

Halton Moor FC faces a ban of up five years from a national cup competition after a mass brawl between players and fans.

Halton Moor FC have been ejected from this year's National FA Carlsberg Sunday Cup after their first round game against Liverpool side Flat House FC was abandoned after just 20 minutes.

Cross Gates Today reported last month how an FA inquiry was launched into the disturbance at Whitkirk Wanderers' ground.

Trouble flared when a Halton Moor player was sent off for a bad tackle. Flat House spectators are then reported to have jumped over the fence and started fighting with Halton Moor players.

Both clubs have now been told they will take no further part in the competition and have been fined 500 by their local FA governing bodies.

A decision will also be taken on February 28 over whether either team will be banned from the competition for even longer.

Football chiefs have the power to ban them for up to five years.

Halton Moor manager Danny Walsh said: "Speaking as someone who grew up on a council estate I think it's very harsh if you are not allowed to defend yourself. You can do in law, so why should it be different on a football pitch?

"Even the fourth official said their supporters had jumped over the barrier and came on to the pitch. What did they expect our players to do?"

Halton Moor are the current Leeds Sunday League champions.

The cup competition is open to all Sunday league football teams across the country, with the final being played at Liverpool FC's Anfield ground.

Last season, Leeds side Fforde Grene narrowly missed out on the final after being beaten by Liverpool team Oyster Martyrs, which featured England star Wayne Rooney's brother Graham.

Mr Walsh added: "We went 32 games unbeaten last season and won four competitions. This year we have won all 12 of our match so far and are chasing five trophies."

George Mallon, manager of Flat House FC, said: "It is very

disappointing for all those involved.

"There has been talk of us being banned for up to five years."