The Football League have refused Crystal Palace special dispensation to sign a player on loan ahead of Wednesday night's FA Cup replay at Aston Villa.
Boss Neil Warnock made the request to boost his threadbare squad, but with the club under a transfer embargo due to being in administration the League turned him down.
Warnock said: "We're a bit depleted, we're down to 19 players and that includes Paddy McCarthy, who is a long-term injury. I've asked the league about a loan but disappointingly I've just found out we can't."
He added: "I thought if you were below 20 players they'd let you bring someone in but we couldn't because of the embargo."
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