THE Welsh Premier League season could be plunged into chaos by the fallout from Connah's Quay's point deduction.
The North Wales club thought claiming victory over Bala in their final match before the mid-season split had booked them a place in the Championship Conference.
It then emerged they were to be docked a point for fielding an ineligible player against Carmarthen on January 5.
After the table was adjusted, it was Carmarthen who finished sixth.
But Connah's Quay plan to appeal the decision, meaning they and Carmarthen are in limbo.
Neither will play a game until the matter is resolved, so the Welsh Premier League fixture list will be reduced from six to four matches every weekend.
And the matter could even drag on for weeks or months with both clubs prepared to go down the legal route to fight their corners.
It is understood the Nomads have even threatened to take their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport if necessary.
That scenario could rule the two clubs out for the rest of the season.
It may also have implications for the likes of Llanelli, Port Talbot and Afan Lido by putting the campaign itself at risk.
Welsh Premier League grounds are set to be used as venues for the Women's Euro 2013 Under-19 tournament this summer.
That poses a problem if the season were to go into overtime.
And there are also financial consequences for clubs who might need to extend players' contracts beyond May.
Connah's Quay were fined £250 and deducted a point after Lee Davey came off the bench against Carmarthen earlier this month.
He had already played for Colwyn Bay and Conway Borough this term and under Uefa rules players are not allowed to represent three clubs in the same season.
Davey's ineligibility did not come to the Football Association of Wales's attention until mid-January, and after an investigation a disciplinary panel met on Friday to decide on a punishment.