Relegated Holywell Town could be set for a late reprieve after league rivals Bangor City were slapped with a 42-point deduction by the Football Association of Wales.

The Citizens faced multiple charges for alleged breaches of FAW rules during last season’s Cymru Alliance campaign.

The litany of charges, which included fielding an ineligible player in 11 league games last term and a “failure to comply with financial obligations towards six of their players”, were upheld by the FAW’s disciplinary committee.

The huge points deduction imposed would leave the Gwynedd club rock bottom of the 2018/19 standings and see Holywell retain their second-tier status as a consequence.

Wellmen boss John Haseldin said: “From our point of view, it’s unexpected but a real bonus for the club.

“After the Licensing criteria was finalised recently we thought that was the end of it and we got our heads around the fact we’d be playing Welsh National League football next season.

“It’s a weird situation, but the FAW have clearly looked at these issues in depth and once these decisions have been made they usually stick to them.

“Nothing’s confirmed yet, and I’ve heard lots of rumours about what will happen next, but we’ll just try to remain focused on getting our squad ready for next season.

“We’re not getting too carried away until something’s finalised, but whichever division we find ourselves in next season we want players who are hungry and who are ready to help us bounce back from last season.”

Three-time Welsh champions Bangor have vowed to fight the points deduction, labelling the punishment “severely harsh”.

The club will lodge an appeal against the punitive measures, seeking to challenge a decision that could result in their second demotion in successive seasons.

The statement said: “This issue will send shockwaves through the football community as many clubs throughout Wales pay players who are registered as non-contract and who are not on professional contracts.

“In the opinion of the FAW, players who sign standard non-contract forms should not be paid apart from expenses and then only if valid receipts are submitted.

“All registration rules have been adhered to and the decision is based on ‘balance of probability’ rather than adhering to their own rules and regulations.

“All forms signed have been submitted correctly and therefore, no blame can be attributed to any individuals who have been involved with the club.

“The punishment that has been issued is severely harsh and not in keeping with previous punishments for similar issues.

“This decision will be appealed - not just in the interests of Bangor City but for every other club within Welsh football who currently are doing the same thing.”

If City’s appeal to overturn the decision fails, it would be the latest in a series of setbacks to blight the crisis-hit club.

The Nantporth side were demoted from the Welsh Premier League at the end of the 2017-18 season after being refused a domestic licence.

Under the chairmanship of former Chester City player Stephen Vaughan Jnr, the club have since avoided a second winding-up order over unpaid tax and further off field problems.