Irish Football Association Decision
10 April 2012
David Casement QC chaired the Sport Resolutions Arbitration Panel at a hearing in Northern Ireland in respect of a registered player, Alan Davidson, who scored the winning goal in Ballymena United’s 2-1 Challenge Cup quarter-final victory against Newry.
The Panel found that Mr Davidson was not eligible to play in the quarter-final of the Challenge Cup Competition on 3 March by reason of Rule 4 of the Challenge Cup Competition Rules. Ballymena had argued that this rule was in conflict with the IFA Premiership Rules & Regulations as well as FIFA Regulations regarding player registration, but the Panel found it entirely permissible for the organisers of the competition to insist upon additional eligibility criteria, above and beyond registration, upon a player before he is eligible to compete.
The Panel’s decision was unanimous. The Panel also stated: “Not withstanding our decision we are of the view that it would be beneficial for Rule 4 to be redrafted… in order to avoid the possibility of any confusion in the future.”
For a full copy of the decision, click here