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Ethiopia admit fielding ineligible player

By Football News



Ethiopia did use a suspended player in a FIFA World Cup qualifying fixture, the president of the country's football federation has admitted.

An investigation has been opened into the alleged offence, which occurred when Minyahile Teshome Beyene took to the field during Ethiopia's 2-1 win against Botswana on June 8, despite being suspended.

A 2-1 victory over South Africa on Sunday should have confirmed their progression to the final round of the CAF qualifying section for Brazil 2014, but they may be docked three points for their error, meaning South Africa could still take top spot in Group A.

"We're not going to appeal, it's a management blunder," Sahilu Gebremariam told BBC Sport. 

"We have accepted the FIFA discipline issue."

If, as expected, they lose the three points for the victory against Botswana, it would leave South Africa trailing by just two points, who host Botswana, while Ethopia will head to Central African Republic in the final round of fixtures.

And Gebremariam has faith in his side to reach the final round play-offs.

"We made a mistake, but we are leading the group and we need to concentrate on the future," he added.

"We're very much motivated and we know we can qualify."

Equatorial Guinea are also facing a further investigation for allegedly fielding an ineligible player in their World Cup qualifying fixture against Cape Verde on June 8.

The news comes after proceedings were opened against the nation for reportedly committing the same offence against Cape Verde on March 24. The Equatorial Guinea Football Federation appealed a decision by the FIFA Discplinary Committee on that issue, with the process on-going.

Both instances relate to an as yet unamed player.