FAI STATEMENT ON HUNGARY V REPUBLIC OF IRELAND MATCH
The Football Association of Ireland has been in contact with FIFA and the Hungarian FA following the report in the Irish Daily Star that FIFA has not recognised the away match against Hungary which was played in Budapest on June 4 this year.
As an away match, the Hungarian FA was responsible for all aspects of the fixture. The Hungarian FA said this morning that they were unaware of the matter but have been in contact with FIFA. They said that they intend to continue their discussions with FIFA in order to have the fixture recognised for international ranking purposes. They have also confirmed that it is their intention to record the fixture as an international match for the purposes of caps.
Separately, FIFA confirmed to the FAI this morning that one of the assistant referees who officiated at the match, Mr David Vang Andersen, was not on the current FIFA list of referees and this is the reason why they are not recognising the match for their international ranking coefficient.
FIFA and UEFA also confirmed this morning that the decision to award a cap is at the discretion of the National Association and that they do not keep a central record of caps.
The Football Association of Ireland has decided that the players who participated in the fixture deserve caps, particularly Damien Duff for the service that he gave to his country. Consequently, the Association has informed Damien that it will recognise his status as having earned 100 caps for Ireland.
Note to editors:
Historically there are numerous examples where Associations have used their discretion to award caps for matches. Irish players who participated in the 1995 match that was abandoned against England for example were awarded caps however the English FA did not award them. English players who participated in the 1963 England match against a rest of the world team were recognised by the FA with caps. Similarly, players who participated in matches played by Ireland against Italy B and West German B teams were given caps even though the matches would not have been recognised by FIFA as full 'A' internationals.
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