Julio Arca free to play in controversial FA Vase replay despite red card

Julio Arca
Julio Arca

South Shields were handed a second chance in the FA Vase after the Football Association ruled their game against Morpeth Town must be replayed.

And in another twist, Julio Arca WILL be able to play in the rescheduled clash tomorrow evening despite his red card in the original game still standing.

Shields were trailing 4-2 with 82 minutes on the clock when the lights failed at Mariners Park on Saturday.

Despite efforts to get the generator restarted, the match was eventually abandoned, with the referee leaving it in the hands of the FA to decide the outcome.

And football’s governing body yesterday ordered a replay in accordance with their rulebook, while at the same time making the draw for the fifth round.

The winners of the rearranged game will travel to Team Solent, on the south coast, on January 28.

The FA have ordered that the game be played tomorrow night.

Midfield star Arca will be available to play, despite being sent off on Saturday for two bookable offences. While every other aspect of the game is wiped out – appearances, goals and more – the disciplinary offences remain.

However, Arca’s suspension won’t come into force until 14 days after the offence, meaning he is free to be selected.

Shields yesterday had an electrical contractor on site to examine the damaged generator and have been exonerated of any blame.

They are now working to connect the generator which powers the new lights at the 3G surface – which sits behind the far goal – to the floodlights which serve the main pitch.

Elsewhere, the only other surviving Northern league club in the Vase, Sunderland RCA, were drawn away at Milton Keynes-based side Newport Pagnell Town in the fifth round.