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Football: Boro become Town to avoid FA penalty; FOOTBALL: Non-league club's officials forced to accept name-change and two-league demotion.

Byline: By Derek Brown

NUNEATON BOROUGH chiefs were told by the FA the club had to have a name change if they wanted to avoid starting next season with a 10-point deduction.

Fans were hit by a double whammy yesterday when the FA confirmed that as punishment for going into liquidation, the club would be demoted two divisions next season to the BGB Southern League Midland Division - and it would have to remove the word 'Borough' from their name.

The club will now be known as Nuneaton Town and director Ian Brown said: "We were told that if the word Borough was in the club title then we would incur a tenpoint penalty as well as the twotier demotion because the FA would deem us the same club.

"The board of Boro Leisure Ltd, trading as Nuneaton Borough AFC, had every intention of keeping the name Borough but this change was forced on us.

"We know this news will disappoint our supporters although the name Nuneaton Town will take the club back to its roots."

Club chairman Ian Neale said: "The FA committee felt as the club had gone into liquidation and it was a new reformed club, they wanted a new name not associated with Nuneaton Borough.

"We suggested many variations of the Boro nickname to the FA, but were met with flat refusals.

"A number of options were discussed by myself, Ian Brown, elected fans' representative Andy Briggs and the Supporters Steering Committee, with the name Nuneaton Town beating Nuneaton FC in a vote."

Neale added: "The SSC also debated the future of the club badge with a return to the old town coat of arms raised, and dismissed by the SSC. The only change to the badge (left) will be the wording on the bottom.

"The club is determined to ensure continuity and hopes to be able to keep its history, and the players' appearances and goal records, alive.

"The players that have already signed will still be contracted to us and we will be doing all we can to ensure the nickname Boro lives on. Work has already started on the necessary rebranding of the club with the cost of the enforced name change likely to run into several thousands of pounds."

The demotion ruling came as no surprise to team boss Kevin Wilkin, who has been preparing for that fate since the beginning of the month.

"Now it is official I can get a few pieces of the jigsaw in place," said a positive Wilkin. "It's very much a matter of getting on with the job and bringing in players who we believe will help us do well in the new league.

"Obviously, we shall aim for promotion from the word go although it's not going to be easy."

Wilkin feels the new regime will bring stability to the club.

"Positive things are happening.

We want a sustainable club that is on a solid financial footing. That's the most important as the future of the club is the main priority."
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Jun 13, 2008
Words:505
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