Saying that they hope the fines would ensure that the integrity of the competition is upheld in future, the EFL today fined five Checkatrade Trophy Clubs for their players unconvincing smiles during games.
According to a statement released by the EFL today, Bradford City, Milton Keynes Dons, Bristol Rovers, West Bromwich Albion and Blackpool have each been hit with fines of £20,000 for their failure to ensure that their players smile in a “persuasively warm manner which would depict contentment”.
“We take no pleasure in fining any club for any reason, but unfortunately the reprimanded sides gave us no choice but to do so due to their inability to control their players’ facial muscles,” read the statement.
“While many of the players were smiling – some even from ear to ear – we simply didn’t believe that they wanted to smile. All of these players should be happy to be playing in the prestigious Checkatrade Trophy, and they should show it.”
At press time, the EFL had sent out a memo to all of the tournament’s clubs, given each a preliminary warning over the puffiness of their players’ shorts.