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FIFA Told: ‘It Was An Imaginary Penalty’

The Beninese Football Federation (FBF) are confident in the protest over their 2-0 defeat against the  Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) which saw them eliminated from the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.

On Monday it was confirmed the official appeal was lodged to the world football governing body over the ‘questionable’ officiating and ‘breaking rules’.

The DRC needed a win to progress to the play-offs while the visitors needed a draw to advance but goals from Dieumerci Mbokani and Ben Malango secured the three vital points but the penalty decision for the opening goal and the administrative error by making four substitutions at separate breaks during the game has been disputed.

According to FIFA, five substitutions are allowed but need to be made at three separate intervals. 

“The Beninese side made no reservations. By law, it should do so two hours after the referee’s final whistle and confirmed within 24 hours.,” Belge Situatala, the general secretary of FECOFA said in an official statement.

“At this stage, I can affirm, without fear, that the result acquired on the ground is irrevocable and no procedure of the Beninese selection will be able to prosper on the subject.”

While it seemed the case was dead and buried, Claude Paquis, Secretary-General of the FBF confirmed to La Nouvelle tribune that the matter will still be heard.

“There was an imaginary penalty. A penalty that did not exist and that the referee whistled against Benin. This penalty has indeed demoralized, demotivated, discouraged the players on the field and that inevitably has a negative impact on the rest of the game,” he said.

“The changes should be made during three windows of replacement and not as the DRC coach did.”

FBF have reiterated they will not give up until they receive justice as they hope to secure their progression to the play-offs for the global showpiece.

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