FIFA orders replay of CAF qualifier following referee lifetime ban

FIFA has ordered a qualifier rematch between Senegal and South Africa after the referee awarded a penalty for a nonexistent handball and was banned for life for match manipulation.

The questionable CAF qualifier, won by South Africa by 2-1 in November last year, will be replayed this November on a date still to be decided.

FIFA says that the body made the decision to order a replay after the Court of Arbitration for Sport ( upheld the life ban sentenced upon the referee in question, Joseph Lamptey of Ghana.

Initially, FIFA had found Lamptey guilty of breaching the rule relating to “unlawfully influencing match results” with the awarding of a penalty to the host nation.

Lamptey, who also officiated at the Rio Olympics last year, declined to comment at the time of his original ban, which came about after a complaint from the Senegal Football Federation.

He had held on to his decision against the Senegal defender Kalidou Koulibaly despite vehement protests from the Senegalese team during the game in Polokwane, South Africa, and despite replays clearly showing the ball struck Koulibaly’s knee and dropped to the ground.

South Africa scored the penalty and went on to win the qualifier for their only victory so far in the final round of qualifiers in Africa. A different result could have a big impact on the South Africa-Senegal group, as Senegal trail the joint-leaders Burkina Faso and Cape Verde by a point.

Additionally, both Senegal and South Africa are currently third and fourth respectively in Africa’s Group D behind Burkina Faso and Cape Verde Islands. Only the top team qualifies for next year’s finals in Russia.

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