Bolivia’s appeal against being docked points for fielding an ineligible player in two World Cup qualifiers has been rejected, FIFA said on Friday.
FIFA docked points from the Bolivians and gave them to Chile and Peru in a Nov. 1 decision after Paraguayan-born Nelson Cabrera’s inclusion in their team for the South American qualifiers.
“The FIFA Appeal Committee has decided to reject the appeals lodged by the Bolivian Football Federation (FBF) and to confirm in its entirety the decisions rendered by the FIFA Disciplinary Committee in the cases relating to the fielding of an ineligible player,” FIFA said in a statement on its website (www.fifa.com).
The FBF might now take their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, Bolivian media reported.
Bolivia beat Peru 2-0 in La Paz then held Chile to a 0-0 draw in Santiago in the first week of September. Chile recovered two points and Peru three as both teams were awarded walkover 3-0 wins.
The two points Chile gained lifted them above Argentina by one point in the 10-team group standings into fourth place, one of the automatic qualifying berths.
Fifth-placed Argentina are in an intercontinental playoff slot for one more berth at the 2018 Russia finals.
Brazil (27 points), Uruguay (23) and Ecuador and Chile (both 20), are in the top four places. Peru are eighth with 14 points and Bolivia one from bottom of the table with seven after 12 matches.
There are six rounds remaining with the next two due to be played on March 23 and 28.
(Reporting by Rodrigo Charme; Writing by Rex Gowar, editing by Pritha Sarkar)