AFC Sudbury were handed a handed a boost in their play-off push this morning, without even playing a game.
The Ryman League board met at Gatwick today to verify a decision that saw Leyton’s results expunged expunged with immediate effect, a move which has handed AFC an advantage over several teams.
The King’s Marsh side, who had dropped to 11th place in Ryman Division One North after Tuesday’s results having not played, six points off Enfield Town in fifth, have edged a point closer to the play-offs with two games in hand on them.
The move would see Nicky Smith’s men, who drew 1-1 away at Leyton in September, move up to ninth where they were before Tuesday, but would pull their play-off rivals closer towards them.
Today’s crunch decision follows a special meeting held at Sutton United Football Club on Sunday with all the league’s member clubs, bar Leyton, voting to have the London club expelled from the league.
It comes after the Lilywhites were unable to pay their second and final instalment to the Ryman League of their £900 membership fee and were unable to fulfil home fixtures with a legal dispute preventing them from having hot water at Leyton Stadium.
Initially, Leyton officials decided to pull them out of the league, but the fact their youth team remained playing under the Ryman League’s system led to league members deciding they must vote on whether to exclude them altogether - at all levels.
Ahead of today’s meeting, Ryman League chairman Alan Turvey said the board was set to formally announce whether Leyton’s results will be expunged in the wake of their expulsion, which will see them relegated as the bottom team, meaning only one other side in Ryman Division One North can go down this year.
“It is probably right to say the board needed the decision of the clubs and the result of that will be made public following the meeting,” said Turvey.
Leyton, who had only fulfilled 19 league fixtures this season, will now face being suspended from returning to the league, under FA rules, unless they begin playing two or three steps further down the pyramid from next season.