National League expel Gateshead FC


Gateshead have been denied a licence by the National League for the 2019/20 season.

Today has seen English non-league’s top flight league, The National League, confirm in a statement that Gateshead FC have been suspended immediately from taking part in next season’s 2019/20 National League campaign following the club having breached multiple charges including its membership rules, its financial position and assessment of its licence.

This comes just after Wednesday’s fiasco where it was reported that the fans of Gateshead had bought their club for £25,000 from owner and Hong Kong based businessman Dr Ranjan Varghese who bought the club a little over a year ago from previous owner Mr Richard Bennett. Varghese had been in talks with former-Rochdale chairman Chris Dunphy since March but those talks ceased a matter of weeks ago after the original price of £1 rose to £100,000 by Joseph Cala.

Following Varghese’s arrival, his reign as owner has been met with controversy following his appointment of former-Portsmouth and Morecambe official Mr Joseph Cala who had been responsible for many of the Heed’s transfer departures throughout the season which led the squad down to a barren 14 players available for their final games of the season.

The squad assembled by Steve Watson also had to fight with a transfer embargo placed on them by the National League throughout the entire campaign with Watson deciding to jump ship in January to National League North side York City during the campaign which led to Heed legend Ben Clark stepping in and managing the club to a surprising yet remarkable top half finish in the league.

In a statement released by the National League today, it stated:

“Gateshead FC has been found guilty of failing to obtain security of tenure over its ground, defaulting on football creditors, and breaching League rules concerning financial reporting and permitted loans.

The club has had 9 points deducted from its playing record for the 2018/19 season and been fined £3,500. The National League table has been amended accordingly.

Furthermore, the club has been suspended from the competition and the League has refused the club a licence for the 2019/20 season.”

As things stand currently, the club is allowed to appeal to the FA with this ruling set to be decided upon by its 68 member clubs at the National League AGM on 8th June 2019.

Its now widely believed if the appeal by Gateshead fails, Aldershot Town will be reprieved following their relegation to the National League South which happened at the end of the 2018/19 season but more to come on that when possible.


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Photographer who's gone everywhere from covering non-league football to covering England internationals. Occasionally write but mostly at football matches with a camera and mono-pod.

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