Portsmouth Women's chairman Eric Coleborn shoulders blame for 'administrative error' which resulted in club's removal from the Women's FA Cup

Chairman Eric Coleborn apologised to all associated with the club for the 'administrative error' which resulted in Pompey Women's removal from the Women's FA Cup.

By Lewis Mason
Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 4:31 pm
Updated Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 5:01 pm
Pompey Women chairman Eric Coleborn
Pompey Women chairman Eric Coleborn

The Blues have been kicked out of the competition for fielding an ineligible player in Sunday's second round 2-0 extra-time victory over Cheltenham Ladies at Westleigh Park.Chairman Coleborn admitted everyone associated with Pompey Women has been left 'gutted' by the FA's decision to remove them from the competition.However, he stressed the blame for the 'administrative mistake' should sit with him as the head of the club.But Coleborn insisted additional measures put in place to get the game on while adhering to Covid-19 guidelines were a contributing factor to the error.The Pompey Women chairman said: 'I apologise to everybody for this.‘It’s an administrative error.'Unfortunately, it’s probably the reason why the administrative error occurred, it’s the fact we were working on so many different things.‘I’m the chair and it’s my responsibility and I can only apologise to the players, staff, management team, my supporters - everybody.‘I’m afraid it’s one of those unfortunate things. It was done totally unintentionally, nobody has tried to cover it up or anything like that, we didn’t do it deliberately.'I’m disappointed and saddened by the decision but I’m not going to blame anybody other than myself. I’m the only person that I would blame here, it’s down to me, I chair this football club and I’m proud to chair this football club.Manager Jay Sadler took the decision to inform his players himself after learning of the news.Coleborn says that showed a measure of the man who is at the Blues helm.And the chairman told how action is now being taken to ensure Pompey Women do not face a repeat in the future.Coleborn added: 'I talked to Jay (Sadler) and he’s been very understanding, he’s obviously gutted at the situation, he wanted to tell the players himself which shows what a fantastic manager he is.'He wanted to tell everybody and I think it just goes to show what an excellent manager we have here.'We all make mistakes but you’ve got to learn from them.‘That’s what we’re doing, we’re putting into place actions to make certain it doesn’t happen again, then you move on.‘It’s one of these things that it’s just a shame it happened as it did.'We wish Cheltenham Town the best, obviously, it’s nothing to do with them and we wish them the best going forward.'

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Pompey were due to host Southern Premier rivals Gillingham at Westleigh Park in the third round this coming Sunday. Had they won, they would have booked a dream trip to Super League giants Arsenal on Sunday, April 18.

Pompey Women have been removed from the Women's FA Cup for fielding an ineligible player. Picture: Dave Haines