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Yorkshire football club bids to play in Scottish Cup on ‘technicality’

Doncaster City FC are bidding to play in the Scottish Cup – currently held by Rangers – though they may not be eligible for the competition (Steve Welsh/PA)
Doncaster City FC are bidding to play in the Scottish Cup – currently held by Rangers – though they may not be eligible for the competition (Steve Welsh/PA)

A Yorkshire football club hoping to compete in next year’s Scottish Cup could see its bid receive a red card.

Bosses at Doncaster City FC say a treaty dating back to 1136, which handed the area to the then Scottish king, could permit them to play north of the border.

The club has contacted the Scottish Football Association (SFA) “applying for next year’s competition”, spokesman Josh Rutherford said.

The SFA refused to give an official comment on the South Yorkshire club’s bid.

However, it is understood that the club cannot apply to participate, as they are not a member club of the Scottish FA and do not meet the eligibility requirements for the competition.

Doncaster City currently play in the  Sheffield & Hallamshire County Senior Football League Division Two, with the club proposing to play in the Scottish Cup as they are not presently permitted to take part in the English FA Cup.

Mr Rutherford said: “We have applied to join the Scottish Cup next season, on the technicality that Doncaster could be part of Scotland.

“In 1136, King Stephen was King of England, and Doncaster was ceded to King David of Scotland in the first Treaty of Durham, and it was never officially given back.

Doncaster is in South Yorkshire, but the football club said a treaty from 1136 could allow it to play in Scotland (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

“We explored that option and have written a letter to the Scottish Football Association, applying for next year’s competition.”

He continued: “We are at the bottom tier of football, but what is the point of not having ambition with these big projects?

“If we get accepted, great, we could have a Scottish tour, go and play there, or a team come down here.

“If we somehow managed to win, then why not Celtic or Rangers away? Or them coming down here?”

Mr Rutherford said: “People are laughing, and saying it is all a joke, but it is good for the area, for businesses, who could hypothetically get to see these teams (come to Doncaster), so why not.”

Two clubs based in England already play in Scotland: Berwick Rangers and Tweedmouth Rangers. Berwick have played in the Scottish Cup since the Fifties.