York City chief has no doubts concerning Ben Davies' integrity
ON-LOAN York City defender Ben Davies has been praised for the manner in which he has coped with his name being linked with spot-fixing allegations.
Following an on-line story naming Davies as one of seven new players - six of whom are contracted to Preston and one from Barnsley - to be questioned by police in relation to betting irregularities, the National Crime Agency, who are conducting the investigation, have confirmed the teenage left-back has not been charged with any offence.
City boss Nigel Worthington, who recruited Davies on a season-long loan from Deepdale last summer, has no doubts, meanwhile, concerning the player's integrity.
The Minstermen chief said: "Ben is an 18-year-old boy who is a very good lad with an exemplary background. He has the full support of both myself and the football club and the big thing to come out of this is that nobody has been charged, so it's just a case of business as usual and we are looking onwards and upwards.
"For one so young, having your name associated with something like this is certainly not a nice thing to go through but these challenges in life are sent to test you and he is strong enough to deal with it and come through it a better player with everybody's support at the football club."
Davies has played more matches than any other player at Bootham Crescent this term but, while Worthington has been impressed with how he has handled the mental toll involved with his ordeal over the last 36 hours, he could be a fitness doubt for today's Sky Bet League Two clash at league leaders Rochdale.
With City currently outside the play-off places on goal difference, the match represents an important encounter for both clubs and Worthington is hoping Davies will be available for the challenge.
Centre-back Tom Allan, though, is likely to be on standby for selection otherwise, with the Minstermen having no other recognised left back on the professional books.
"Ben did pick up a knock last Saturday and he will be assessed this morning to see where he is at fitness wise," Worthington revealed.
When asked by The Press whether the National Crime Agency had questioned Davies, a spokesman said: "We only reveal the identity of individuals if they have been charged."
In a club statement, Preston also commented: "There are no suggestions that any offences that might have occurred involved match fixing."