Former Dundee and Hibs star Jason Cummings has already found himself embroiled in controversy following his move to Australia – with the former Scotland international set to miss out on the chance to get his hands on his first piece of silverware down under.

Central Coast Mariners are set to play in their first-ever FFA Final against Melbourne Victory on Saturday but, after Mariners moved their semi-final date, Cummings will miss out.

A-League Men's Rd 12 - Sydney FC v Central Coast Mariners
(Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

The competitions rules don’t allow players to play in the final if they were signed after the semis, however with Central Coast Mariners having moved their game forward to get it played amid Covid concerns, the club feel they have been unfairly punished.

Melbourne Victory didn’t play their semi-final until 11 days after Cummings’ side had booked their place in the final, and Central Coast Mariners chief executive Shaun Mielekamp thinks Cummings being ruled out is unfair on his club after they moved the game to help out the Australian FA.

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“This is a very disappointing decision made by the FFA that in our opinion has robbed the final of being the best possible spectacle that it can be and has prevented us from fielding our strongest side,” Mielekamp said.

“All football fans want to see the best players play every match and we are disappointed that this will not be the case on Saturday.

“Both semi-finals should have been played at the same time, with our semi-final being 11 days before the second semi-final our club has clearly been disadvantaged.

“It is our view that all clubs should have the same registration windows and clearly, this year that is not the case.

“Our club’s cooperation with the FFA by playing the first semi-final early as scheduled has in the end, hurt us.

“Had both semi-finals been played at the time of the second semi-final, Jason Cummings would be playing this weekend.”

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