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Paper falls foul of league's football ban

The Kidderminster Shuttle/Times & News has fallen foul of a local youth football league which has banned the paper from publishing results of matches where one team scores more than seven goals.

The paper is now refusing to publish any of the results from the Stourport and District Youth League – which comprises 188 teams – in the hope that the league will reverse its decision and provide a full set of score lines.

The league’s committee made the decision not to release some scores after members objected when words such as “thrashed” and “smashed” were used to describe results in Shuttle/Times & News reports.

Shuttle/Times & News editor Clive Joyce said: “The league’s decision means we are no longer in a position to give a complete picture of activities in this thriving and successful league.

“This is obviously unacceptable to a newspaper that prides itself on being the paper of record for Wyre Forest. We endeavour to provide comprehensive coverage of the district’s sporting scene and cannot be a party to reporting selected results.

“If you take it to its logical conclusion they will start providing league tables with the bottom three or four teams missing.

“We will not be carrying these incomplete reports in future and that means the real losers in all this are the children. I would like to think the league will reconsider their position.”

Tracey Kidd, the league’s press officer, said: “As a committee, we decided not to publish the scores because of the wording used in some newspapers’ match reports, including the Shuttle/Times & News.

“We have had a girl who plays in the under-eights league in tears after she read that her team was hammered.

“The decision was made with the full support of all the clubs and we have received no complaints from parents.”

Hundreds of players from the district, aged between six and 18, take part in league games at weekends throughout the season.