National League round-up: Notts County coronavirus update and FA Cup controversy with Stockport County and Chesterfield forced to replay fourth qualifying round tie

Here’s the latest from Hartlepool United’s rivals around the National League.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Notts County players returned to training this week after temporarily halting their National League campaign and withdrawing from the FA Cup following a number of coronavirus cases in the squad.

The Magpies last match was a 3-2 defeat at home to Maidenhead United which went ahead despite four players tested positive for Covid-19. Notts have been testing players regularly throughout the season and players will be having antibody tests this week.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Although testing isn’t mandatory in the National League, manager Neal Ardley feels it should be as he hopes to get his side’s season back under way.

A general view outside Meadow Lane, home of Notts County (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)A general view outside Meadow Lane, home of Notts County (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
A general view outside Meadow Lane, home of Notts County (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

When discussing the precautions his side are taking, Ardley told BBC Radio Nottingham: “All the players have to travel in on their own.

"As soon as they come into the building they have to wear a mask unless they’re eating. Only five in the gym at any one point, we’ve got sanitary equipment to wipe the equipment down and hand sanitisers everywhere.

When discussing the potential of repeat occurrences, he added: "I’m not confident it’s not going to happen again.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"You’re playing a game of football where you’re not socially distanced against teams who may not have had players tested in months, how can you be confident? It would be naive of me to be confident.”

Elsewhere in the division, Chesterfield have been forced to replay their FA Cup fourth qualifying win over Stockport County due to an administrative error.

The Spireites won the original tie on October 24 on penalties following a 1-1 draw at Edgeley Park.

With that, they looked to have secured £9,395 in prize money as well as a first round tie at Rochdale this weekend. But it has since emerged that Chesterfield failed to register Burnley loanee Jordan Cropper with the Football Association in time for the game.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Cropper started the game and scored in the penalty shoot out as the Derbyshire outfit were found to be in breach of competition rules by fielding an ineligible player.

Instead of throwing The Spireites out of the competition due to the error, the FA have ordered the match to be replayed on Wednesday night (7:45pm kick-off).

A message from the Football Clubs Editor

Our aim is to provide you with the best, most up-to-date and most informative Hartlepool United coverage 365 days a year.

This depth of coverage costs, so to help us maintain the high-quality reporting that you are used to, please consider taking out a subscription to our new sports-only package here.

Your support is much appreciated. Richard Mennear, Football Clubs Editor