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Maidstone United co-owner Oliver Ash assures fans they can afford legal battle over 3G pitch

Maidstone United co-owner Terry Casey Picture: Ady Kerry
Maidstone United co-owner Terry Casey Picture: Ady Kerry

Co-owner Oliver Ash has assured Maidstone fans a 3G court case wouldn’t put the club’s future at risk.

There is further pressure on the Conference to accept 3G pitches after reports the FA are set to approve it for all their competitions next season.

That would leave Premier League and Football League clubs open to playing on the surface in the FA Cup.

Stones are prepared to take the Conference to a tribunal if the board refuse to allow their artificial pitch in the South Division in the event of promotion. Top QCs believe United have a strong case under restraint of trade and competition laws.

Mr Ash remains hopeful of an out-of-court compromise with the Conference. He’ll pursue the legal route if necessary and is confident Maidstone would win, but he insists the club will cope if a tribunal rules against them and they have to pay costs.

He said: “I still live in hope that common sense will prevail and 3G will be allowed in Conference South.

“There are heavy costs involved in any tribunal hearing, which would be a risk for them and their clubs, as well as us. If it goes to court, whoever loses will have to pay costs which could be substantial.

“Our club is in a good financial position. We were one of the few clubs who published our accounts as soon as the season finished. We wouldn’t have done that if we had anything to hide.

“If the worst came to the worst and we lost a tribunal, it wouldn’t be the end of the world."

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