BY OOI KIN FAI Follow on Twitter
Football Malaysia Limited Liability Partnership (FMLLP) announced on Tuesday evening that four teams - two each from the Super League and Premier League have been deducted six points each for failing to comply with registration regulations for the M-League.
With immediate effect - Kelantan, T-Team, Perlis and ATM will have six points deducted from their current points total in their respective leagues. That means that Kelantan drops from 5th spot to 7th spot while T-Team drops from 7th to 8th spot in the standings.
In the Premier League, ATM will drop from 6th to 8th spot with the points deduction while bottom-placed Perlis will have all the points that they have amassed this season taken away from them and thus puts a big dent in their hopes of staying in the division.
All four teams were found guilty of flouting the registration rules which requires them to provide proof and records of complete salary payments, Employees Provident Fund (EPF) payments, Social Security Organisation (SOSCO) payments and Inland Revenue Board of Malaysia (IRB) payments from the years prior to 2017.
Reminders were sent out on 27 January 2017 and 7 March 2017 but these four teams were still unable to submit the required documents to complete the registration and this left FMLLP with no choice but to punish them.
The four teams are now being given until 15 May 2017 to complete all that is required or they will face a transfer ban. However, a lifeline is thrown to those teams as FMLLP will allow transfer(s) provided there's a saving involved pertaining to those transfer(s).
Further to that, should these teams continue failing to comply with the requirements of registration before the final day of the 2017 season which falls on 31 October, they can be punished with relegation for the 2018 season. Following on, they could be completely barred from participation in the 2018 season, should they fail to complete all that is necessary prior to the start of the 2018 season.
Despite the points deduction, both Kelantan and T-Team still qualified for the Malaysia Cup as their new points total are still higher than last-placed, Penang.