FIFA punishes Nigeria for fielding ineligible player

FIFA punishes Nigeria for fielding ineligible player
Shehu Abdullahi of Nigeria challenges Zambo Andre of Cameroon during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifier match between Nigeria vs Cameroon on September,1st 2017 at Godswill Akpabio Stadium ©Kabiru Abubakar/fotodezamora

by Graeme Jackson

Wednesday Dec 13, 2017. 11:30

FIFA have issued a punishment to Nigeria for fielding an ineligible player in their final 2018 World Cup qualifier away to Algeria last month.

The match in Constantine on November 10 ended in a 1-1 draw, but that has been overturned and a 3-0 win has been awarded to the North Africans.

The decision does not affect the Super Eagles’ qualification for Russia 2018, as they had already secured their passage to the tournament before the match against Algeria.

FIFA have overturned the result and fined the Nigerian Football Federation US$6,000 after they fielded Abdullahi Shehu in the match, even though he had picked up two yellow cards in previous matches and was therefore suspended.

“The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has been sanctioned for fielding an ineligible player in the match between Algeria and Nigeria on 10 November 2017,” FIFA said in a statement published on its official website.

“The match is declared to be forfeited and awarded 3-0 in favour of Algeria, with the NFF also receiving a fine of US$6,000.

“The sanction relates to the player Abdullahi Shehu failing to serve the automatic one-match suspension imposed on him as a result of receiving a caution in two separate matches of the same competition.

“This sanction bears no impact on the final result of the preliminary competition for the FIFA World Cup since Nigeria had already qualified (and Algeria eliminated) before the match took place.”



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