Latics director Luke Rothwell says losing the club's Football Association and Football League affiliated academy has been the biggest disappointment over the last two years, and branded the ruling "a disgrace".

The Rothwell family completed their takeover of Oldham Athletic in July 2022, with Latics preparing for the club's first season outside of the EFL, after they became the first former Premier League club to be relegated from the Football League.

With Oldham now spending a third year in the National League, while they are able to retain a youth team the club loses its EPPP status and all the funding, regulation and protection that goes with it, meaning they would no longer be entitled to compensation should one of their youth players sign for another club.

"Since we've owned the club the biggest disappointment was losing the EPPP academy," said Rothwell, son of Latics chairman Frank.

"I think it's a disgrace that a club like Oldham that has a very well respected academy that has produced a lot of players and an income stream for the club has been taken away from the club. With the hotbed of talent we have it's disgraceful, like the demise of Bury and the academy that went there."

The Rothwells pumped a six-figure sum into the club's academy last season to keep it going for a second year, with funding halved after the first year outside of the Football League.

"We chose to finance the academy for an extra year, Rochdale (this year) chose not to. It is expensive but we wanted to keep that opportunity for everybody to develop the young players," Rothwell explained.

"We will have an academy (going forward), it just won't be an EPPP academy, which means we get no compensation if anyone takes our players or from sell-on clauses.

"We sold five kids to Premier League clubs last season. That becomes a huge income stream for a club like this if you put sell-on clauses on that."

Alfie Atherton, Jesse Williams and Mo Doro have all been offered deals ahead of the 2024/25 season after graduating from the club's academy this summer.

Atherton has enjoyed an excellent season, operating mainly as a striker having started as a wide player.

Williams has captained the Under 18s side throughout the campaign in the centre of the defence while left-back Doro has continued his good individual progress this season.

And chairman Frank Rothwell insisted that restoring the club's EPPP was a driving force in their quest for promotion back to the Football League for the first team.

"It's really important to Oldham Athletic that we get promoted because we want to be able to re-open the academy as a Football Association and Football League academy," he said.