Nigeria Stripped Of Unbeaten World Cup Qualifying Record

FIFA fines Nigeria for fielding ineligible player in World Cup qualifier

FIFA's Disciplinary Committee had on Tuesday announced that Nigeria was forfeiting the 2018 FIFA World Cup Africa Zone Final Qualifying Group B match against Algeria in Constantine played on November 10.

Nigeria, who had already qualified for the finals, drew 1-1 but Federation Internationale de Football Association awarded the match to Algeria by a 3-0 scoreline after the Super Eagles fielded the ineligible Abdullahi Shehu who had failed to serve a one-match ban for accumulated yellow cards.

Shehu had received a yellow card in the match against Zambia in Uyo on October 10, 2017 (the match in which victory guaranteed Nigeria a place in Russia), making it a second for him in the qualifying race, following an earlier yellow card against Swaziland in the preliminary round.

Federation Internationale de Football Association fined the NFF the sum of CHF 6,000 (N2,162, 923), declaring the match forfeited and awarded it 3-0 in favour of Algeria.

Although, the deduction would not affect the final group ratings as Nigeria had already qualified before the match, Pinnick, reacting to the news, declared that "somebody must be punished". It also fined the NFF CHF 6,000.

The match which was both teams' concluding match in the series had ended in a 1-1 draw, but Federation Internationale de Football Association on Tuesday awarded all three points to Algeria.




"To be fair to them, throughout the qualifying series, official match documents didn't even show that Shehu Abdullahi was on a yellow card".

Pinnick said: "We accept the decision of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee to fine the NFF and award the match to Algeria".

"This is a grave error and somebody must be punished", NFF president Amaju Pinnick said in a statement.

"At the same time, I want to assure that persons responsible for this slip-up would not be given just a slap on the wrist".

NFF Executive Committee members Ibrahim Gusau and Felix Anyansi-Agwu are other members of the panel, with Mohammed Nasir Saidu, Chairman of Sokoto State Football Association, to serve as member/secretary.

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