Celtic given Champions League lifeline as Legia Warsaw player ruled ineligible for 6-1 win
The Bhoys have been reinstated in the Champions League
Friday 08 August 2014
Celtic have been handed a Champions League reprieve after Legia Warsaw were punished for fielding an ineligible player in their 6-1 aggregate win over the Scottish champions in the third qualifying round.
Bartosz Bereszynski, who came on as an 86th-minute substitute as Legia won the second leg 2-0 at Murrayfield on Wednesday night, was suspended following a red card for violent conduct in last season's Europa League.
Hours before the draw for the next round was to be made, UEFA announced that Celtic had been awarded a 3-0 win in the second leg, and therefore qualified on away goals after a 4-4 aggregate result.
Celtic will now go into the draw for the play-offs, the final hurdle to reach the lucrative group stages.
"Legia have been sanctioned for fielding an ineligible player (article 18 of the UEFA Champions League regulations and article 21 of the Disciplinary Regulations). The match has been declared as forfeit meaning Legia Warszawa have lost the match 3-0," a UEFA statement said.
"As a consequence, Celtic have qualified for the UEFA Champions League play-offs on away goals (agg: 4-4) and Legia will compete in the UEFA Europa League play-offs.
"In addition the player Bartosz Bereszynski has been suspended for one additional UEFA competition match for which he would be otherwise eligible. This suspension shall be added to the remaining two match suspension which the player still has to serve in accordance with the Control and Disciplinary Body decision of 13 February 2014."
Bereszynski was sent off against Apollon in the final match of Legia's Europa League campaign last season, earning a three-match suspension. He missed both legs of Legia's tie against St Patrick's in the second qualifying round and also sat out the 4-1 first-leg victory over Celtic.
However, it has emerged that Bereszynski had not been registered in Legia's squad for the second qualifying round, and so the matches did not count towards his suspension.
Legia chairman Dariusz Mioduski vowed to challenge UEFA's decision.
He wrote on Twitter: "Today, the sport lost behind closed doors. We made a mistake, sorry, but the penalty is disproportionate. Stay with us. We fight on."
Latest in Sport
Karim Benzema to Arsenal: Real Madrid striker fuels speculation he will join Gunners with cryptic Instagram post
Chelsea vs Barcelona: what channel is it on and how can I watch it?
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Arsene Wenger hits back over Jose Mourinho's claims 'buying success' ahead of Community Shield
Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool – highest and lowest transfer spenders revealed
Outraged Vietnamese fan burns Manchester City tickets after being snubbed by Raheem Sterling, Samir Nasri and others
- 1 Cecil the lion: Dentist Walter Palmer blames local guides in Zimbabwe for the scandal
- 2 Kate Winslet thanked 'particularly horrible' girl who bullied her at school after Titanic success
- 3 Norwich paedophile ring: Woman at centre of gang who made children 'sexual play things' guilty of 23 offences
- 4 Black and ethnic minority people twice as likely to be hit by Tory cuts than white people, report finds
- 5 Walter Palmer: Cecil the lion killer revealed to be American dentist
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
The last thing Labour needs is a leader like Jeremy Corbyn who people want to vote for
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn – or a return to a Labour government
I am the Jeremy Corbyn supporter that many will tell you doesn't exist
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband