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Dover Athletic chairman Jim Parmenter hits back at FA after appeal rejected

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Jim Parmenter says Dover have been failed by the football authorities after their appeal against a £40,000 fine and 12-point deduction was rejected.

Whites chairman Parmenter said he was “surprised and disappointed” by the outcome and “angered” and "disgusted” by the FA’s written reasons.

Dover were charged by the National League with failure to fulfil four fixtures between February 16 and 27 after placing their squad on furlough.

The club said they couldn’t afford to keep playing without fans at Crabble and did not want to take out a government loan which they felt went against league rules anyway.

The FA, in throwing out their appeal, questioned the lack of financial projections or forecasts from Dover in their evidence, saying that made it “impossible to see whether or not the club could afford to service the loan”.

They also questioned why Parmenter had offered “no breakdown of personal wealth...to show why he could not provide equity contributions as in previous years”.

Parmenter, speaking to Dover’s website, said: “What it highlights is it’s not truly an independent system and the system’s failed here - I definitely believe that.

“I was surprised and disappointed by the result, but I was quite angered by the written reasons.

“The financial situation we were in was very clear and that was demonstrated and the fact we weren’t able to project the next five years when we were in the middle of a pandemic doesn’t seem to me to be relevant.

Dover Athletic chairman Jim Parmenter Picture: Tony Flashman
Dover Athletic chairman Jim Parmenter Picture: Tony Flashman

“The suggestion my personal financial information should have been made public in order to support our case when we’re dealing with a football club that’s a limited company should be a warning to anybody that’s thinking of investing in a football club or supporting a football club financially, because it seems the FA deem it their right to decide how much you should be putting into a club and how much you shouldn’t, and I’m frankly disgusted by that.”

Dover will start next season on -12 points and few will give them any chance of surviving in the National League.

But they’ll fight on with a reduced budget and Parmenter has called on the people of Dover to get behind the team.

“We’ve had to cut our budget,” he said. “Despite suggestions to the contrary, we’re going to be on probably 50 per cent of the budget we had last year but this is Dover and we’ll be fighting like hell next season.

“We’re going to start with a 12-point deduction but that’s something for us to target and aim at and try and get over.

“I think it’s commonly thought that we’ve been treated quite badly, and unfairly, and I still hold that true.

“I think the football system has failed us, I think the FA have failed us and I think the general public and the town and the area need to get behind the club to show they think we’ve been unfairly treated.

“Somebody at some point has to stand up and say, 'This is not right, we can’t allow clubs to be treated like this when they’re in genuine financial difficulty.'”

Read more: The latest sports news in Kent

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