BURY say they will appeal the decision by the North West Counties League to dock them three points for fielding an ineligible player.

The club was hit with a £100 fine and a points deduction, which if rubber-stamped would see Andy Welsh’s side drop to fifth place in the table.

Bury have not named the player involved but it is understood the offence took place in August and related to a new signing.

The club disputes this and is in the process of appealing to the Football Association. No sanctions will take effect until the appeal has been heard.

“We have been notified of the League’s intention to fine the club £100 and deduct three points for fielding a player contracted to another club.

“We know supporters will be severely disappointed to learn that we might lose hard earned points, as is Andy Welsh and his team. We would, however, ask for your patience as we go through the appeals process and will not be sharing any further information at this stage so as not to compromise that appeal.

“In addition to the appeal, the club has now also made some process changes to mitigate against this risk in future. The volunteer involved in the transfer is no longer working with the club, and there is no evidence he knew of a problem. Neither the player nor any of the management team were aware of any concerns, and we would not play anyone where there was any known problem. There is nothing to be gained by blaming individuals given the specifics of this case.

“The points deduction does not alter any of the results achieved to date. They all stand. There are 105 points up for grabs in our league campaign now. The focus is on continuing with our preparations and winning as many of those points as possible until the end of the season.”