SPENNYMOOR TOWN are facing a potential blow to their promotion hopes as four of their players have been charged by the Football Association with betting breaches – including top scorer Glen Taylor.

The others are striker Adam Boyes, left-back Stephen Brogan and Ryan Hall, who is on loan at Bradford Park Avenue.

All four have admitted to misconduct in relation to betting, which is a breach of FA Rule E8.

Boyes placed 2,768 bets between March 2010 and August 2019, Taylor 162 between August 2013 and April 2019, Brogan 2,414 between January 2015 and February 2019 and Hall 103 between October 2013 and October 2018.

It is understood none of the players gambled on the outcome of matches involving Spennymoor Town.

Players, managers and club officials in the top eight tiers of English football are prohibited from betting on any football worldwide and have been since 2014.

These charges are part of an FA crackdown across non-league football on betting in matches higher up the pyramid.

In response to their players being charged, Spennymoor have worked with the authorities to remind their squad and officials of the strict regulations in place.

A spokesperson for Spennymoor Town said: “The FA are carrying out a campaign to better educate footballers of all levels on its rules around conduct, betting and other areas. Neither Spennymoor Town nor its players are being specifically targeted and there are a large number of individuals from the top seven tiers of English football on the FA charges list for January.

“The charges in question are relating to time periods as wide as nine years, including periods before the players played for Spennymoor Town.

“Since being made aware, the club has completed a programme of education for all of its staff, volunteers and players with the support of the FA. These players had not received this level of engagement on these subjects at other clubs and are now educated on their responsibilities as part-time footballers.”

Depending on the severity of each occurrence there a range of sanctions available to the FA, with a fine and a suspension possible.

Soham Town Rangers, members of the BetVictor Isthmian League North, have recently seen their management team and three players found guilty of betting breaches.

Manager Robbie Mason and assistant Erkan Okay were given a £300 fine each, while striker Matthew Allan was given a six-month ban after placing 254 bets over a three-year period.

Today, ex-Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge has been banned from football for four months for breaching betting rules.

He was originally given a six-week ban last summer, four of them suspended, but the FA appealed against the findings of an independent commission.

An appeal board also doubled the 30-year-old's fine to £150,000.

Sturridge's contract with Turkish side Trabzonspor has been terminated by mutual agreement.

In 2017 Joey Barton was banned for 18 months after being charged with placing 1,260 bets on matches or competitions from 2006 to 2016, though the length was later reduced on appeal.

Spennymoor are seventh in the National League North, occupying the final play-off position with ten fixtures to play.

Both Brogan and Taylor started Saturday’s match, a 3-3 draw with AFC Telford United, and Boyes was a substitute.

Their next match is on Saturday at fifth-placed Altrincham.