Tribunal rejects Oyston’s appeal

Karl Oyston
Karl Oyston
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The Football Association will continue disciplinary proceedings against Blackpool chairman Karl Oyston over text messages sent to a supporter after his appeal against misconduct charges was rejected.

The Blackpool chairman was charged on March 23 for using language deemed offensive in texts to a supporter.

Oyston apologised publicly for the texts, in which he called supporter Steven Smith a ‘retard’ and told him to ‘enjoy your special needs day out’.

The chairman was charged by the FA after a three-month investigation and granted extra time to respond.

Last month he decided to appeal against the charges, choosing to question their legality.

Oyston has argued the texts were part of an exchange between private mobile phones, were made outside business hours and were sent in response to unsolicited contact.

Oyston also told the FA he had no reason to suspect Smith would make public any part of their exchange, adding he had not wished to bring any embarrassment on himself or the football club.

He went further, claiming publication of the content of the messages has breached his rights under article eight of the European Human Rights Convention, which relates to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence.

It has taken an arbitration tribunal– appointed in light of Oyston’s appeal – more than a month to reach a conclusion. But on Saturday, it ruled the decision to bring charges against the Blackpool chairman was lawful.

A statement from the FA read: “On 20 March 2015, The FA charged Blackpool FC chairman Karl Oyston with misconduct.

“By response, Mr Oyston sought to claim that The FA’s decision to charge was unlawful and, therefore, the disciplinary proceedings should be stayed. On 15 May 2015, the matter was considered by an Arbitral Tribunal pursuant to FA Rule K.

“The Arbitral Tribunal dismissed Mr Oyston’s claim, concluding that The FA’s decision to bring the charge was not unlawful and the charge was properly brought. The FA’s disciplinary proceedings against Mr Oyston should, therefore, proceed.”

Oyston must now wait for the outcome of the FA’s disciplinary proceedings. His punishment could be decided within the next few weeks and could potentially involve a lengthy ban from all football activities.

That makes the need to appoint a manager at Bloomfield Road even more urgent.

The Seasiders were expected to unveil their new man over the weekend, with talks understood to be at an advanced stage with one potential candidate.

However there was no news from Bloomfield Road and Blackpool have just four weeks to appoint a boss before their players return for pre-season training.