Larne boss unhappy with football officialdom

Paul Millar wasn’t a happy man last week, his annoyance directed at a couple of different sets of people who run football (writes Kevin Hughes).

The failure of Downpatrick Rec to pay a fine led to Larne sitting out last Saturday when they should have been playing the junior club in a Steel and Sons Cup match – and the Larne manager says that has cost his club money at a time when they need all the cash they can get.

Larne only learned last Wednesday morning that their second round game was not being played as scheduled, being left in limbo because there was no immediate indication as to whether the match would be rescheduled – or if their opponents would be eliminated from the competition.

But on Monday night, the Co Down side was kicked out, leaving the Inver Park team with an appetising clash in round three with local rivals Wellington Rec.

“We didn’t know what the rules are and nobody seemed to be sure what was likely to happen, with the only signs being that we would hear after that Monday night meeting,” said Millar.

“We had a match sponsor and ball sponsor, I suspect that the printing of programmes had been well advanced and we’ve also lost a Saturday gate that we could well have been doing with – and that’s not to mention the team having a blank date, which we all hate so much.

And the other football authority Millar was annoyed with? It’s the IFA, who he says casually announced last Tuesday night that the transfer window for Championship One clubs closed this week in tandem with the Carling Premiership clubs – where before it didn’t close until March.

Kevin Hughes keeps Larne FC fans up to date every week in the Larne Times