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"Uefa's discliplinary panel decided Haifa had been negligent"
 real 14k

banner Thursday, 2 August, 2001, 21:21 GMT 22:21 UK
Liverpool opponents expelled
Haifa star Walid Badir in Wimbledon colours
Badir once scored a goal at Old Trafford
Liverpool's Champions League opponents Maccabi Haifa have been thrown out of the competition.

Uefa ruled on Friday that the Israeli champions had fielded an ineligible player.

Liverpool are now set to face FC Haka of Finland instead in the third qualifying round.

Haifa can appeal, throwing the first leg set for 8 August into disarray.

The club displayed culpable negligence by not clarifying the suspension with Uefa
  Uefa statement
Haifa beat Finnish side Haka by an aggregate of 5-0, but their second leg 4-0 win saw them field former Wimbledon player Walid Badir.

European football's governing body Uefa informed Haifa that Badir had not completed a three-match suspension, held over from last season's Uefa Cup.

But Haifa believed that he was only banned for two matches and did not play him in the first leg in Finland.

He had already missed a second-leg match against Vitesse Arnhem in the Uefa Cup last season.

Uefa's control and disciplinary body on Friday gave Haka a 3-0 win for the second leg - because of the Haifa error - thereby overturning Haifa's 1-0 lead from the first leg.


The Uefa statement read: "Based on the communication received from the Israeli Football Association, Maccabi Haifa were of the opinion that the player had served the suspension by missing the first leg in Finland.

"But according to the control and disciplinary body the club displayed culpable negligence by not clarifying the suspension with Uefa.

"A 3-0 "default" scoreline was therefore imposed in favour of FC Haka, giving the Finnish side a 3-1 aggregate victory in the tie."

Haifa have three days to protest and an appeal date of 6 August has been set if needed.

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