Pompey await Checkatrade Trophy fine

Paul Cook. Picture: Joe Pepler
Paul Cook. Picture: Joe Pepler
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POMPEY still await their fate for fielding Checkatrade Trophy sides which contravene competition rules.

The Blues have yet to be fined following Paul Cook’s team selection policy in the opening two matches.

That wait is to continue after the Football League informed clubs any punishment will now not be served until after the group stages.

According to regulations in the much-maligned cup, League One or League Two clubs must field at least five players from the starting XI which began the previous league game.

Alternatively, they can name five out of the top 11 appearance makers during the season so far.

Failure to follow such guidelines is meant to incur an initial £5,000 fine, with any additional punishment at the Football League’s discretion.

Pompey made 11 changes for September’s defeat at Yeovil, while there were 10 in last week’s 2-2 draw with Reading under-23s.

That would warrant a punishment of at least £5,000 – equalling last season’s amount for the Blues team fielded against Exeter in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.

However, anticipated fines have been put on hold until the group stage of the competition is completed at the start of next month.

That will buy the Football League enough time to evaluate the unwanted publicity of their being too many clubs to punish.

A number of League One and League Two sides have blooded youngsters in a bid to give them first-team experience – precisely the policy league chiefs want those participating under-23 sides to operate under.

Pompey’s final match of Southern Group A takes place on Tuesday, November 3, with the visit of Bristol Rovers.