Cardiff given UEFA Cup green light

Cardiff City will be allowed to enter the UEFA Cup if they win next month's FA Cup final, England's Football Association confirmed on Thursday.

The Welsh club, who play in the English Championship, were orginally told Football Association regulations would make them ineligible to represent England in Europe if they beat Portsmouth at Wembley, because, as a Welsh side, they would normally have to qualify via the Welsh Cup.

But UEFA had insisted they backed Cardiff's case and the FA board agreed on Thursday to change that ruling, giving Dave Jones's side the chance to dream of a continental campaign next season.

An FA statement said: "The Board has given full approval for Cardiff City to participate in next season's UEFA Cup as one of England's representatives, should they win this season's FA Cup.

"It was decided that the Welsh national anthem would also be played ahead of the game."