DION Donohue won’t sign for Swindon Town until January 2 at the very earliest after the EFL ruled Richie Wellens’ move to resubmit the defender’s contract as ineligible.

Donohue first signed for Swindon on an initial one-month deal following his sacking by Mansfield – which was prompted after his arrest on suspicion of assault for an incident that took place in August.

His first month at Town proved successful, with Donohue appearing six times under Wellens.

That prompted the Town boss to extend the 26-year-old’s stay in Wiltshire, but this move was blocked by the EFL after Town failed to resubmit the agreed contract within five days of his previous deal expiring.

It is outlined by the EFL that players must re-sign within five days of the expiration of their most recent deal.

The rule is in place to protects players’ wellbeing and prevents teams from ‘using and abusing’ individuals.

However, Donohue’s situation has this time fallen on the wrong side of the EFL’s law. And he will subsequently not receive any payment from Town until January 2.

Despite the above, Donohue is available to play in behind closed doors fixtures and will continue to train with the club.

Wellens said: “We knew about the five-day rule. If we’re being ultra-critical of ourselves, we and the player’s agent should’ve known about it.

“The rule has been brought in to protect players, so clubs can’t use and abuse them.

“Unfortunately, in this case, it is stopping a lad earning money for his family.

“He’s got no other option than to be professional and get on with his job.

“He has been in training - we’ve just got to get on with it.”