2022 World Cup: Fifa rejects appeals from South Africa and Benin over qualifying incidents

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Fifa has rejected separate appeals from South Africa and Benin over incidents in recent 2022 World Cup qualifying matches.

The disciplinary committee of football's world governing body declared both protests inadmissible but also added the decisions are subject to appeal.

While Fifa referred to its Disciplinary Code and the regulations for the World Cup qualifiers it did not offer the exact reasons for the rulings.

It means, as it stands, that Ghana and DR Congo will be in January's draw for the African World Cup play-offs, with the two-legged ties set to be played in March.

South Africa protested after a 1-0 loss to Ghana on 14 November in a crucial qualifier which saw the Black Stars advance to the play-offs at the expense of the Bafana Bafana on goals scored.

The decisive goal came following the award of a first-half penalty.

The complaint lodged by South Africa Football Association (Safa) with football's world governing body included allegations of "match fixing, match manipulation including corruption and bribery".

Safa president Danny Jordaan later claimed there was a betting spike during the match.

Benin's protest concerned its 2-0 defeat by DR Congo in World Cup qualifying on the same day. The result saw DR Congo progress to the play-offs instead of Benin, who had needed a win to advance.

The appeal was about the fact that DR Congo made four substitutions on four separate occasions during the match.

Under current Fifa regulations for international games, teams are allowed to make up to five substitutes but only during three windows in the game.

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