Algerian Federation to punish officials over Nigeria bungle

Algerian Federation to punish officials over Nigeria bungle
Algerian player Slimani Islam (L) in action against Nigerian player William Ekong (R) during the FIFA World Cup 2018 qualifying soccer match between Algeria and Nigeria at Chahid-Hamlaoui stadium in Constantine, Algeria, 10 November 2017.

by Graeme Jackson

Saturday Dec 16, 2017. 10:00

The Algerian Football Federation has promised to punish officials who missed the Abdullahi Shehu bungle in last month’s 2018 World Cup qualifier against Nigeria.

The match ended 1-1 in Constantine, but FIFA has since awarded a 3-0 win to Algeria due to Nigeria’s fielding of the ineligible Shehu, who had picked up two cautions earlier in the qualifiers and should have been suspended.

The Super Eagles missed committed the fault due to an administrative error, but Algeria were also guilty of missing the issue - even though it was to their benefit in the end.

“I have just learned that FIFA has awarded us the points of the match in Nigeria, without any reservations,” Bachir Ould Zmirli, who is the chairman of the National Teams Committee in Algeria, was quoted as saying by Le Buteur.

”That means that we have not been aware of the offense and that is serious, even if there is no issue since we are eliminated. It's simply mismanagement.

“It is very serious that there is this kind of error. We must punish the perpetrators of this fault and take the necessary measures.”

The issue made no difference to either Algeria - who still finished bottom of the group despite being awarded the three points - or Nigeria, who still qualified for Russia 2018 as group winners.

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