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Dublin: 9 °C Thursday 24 October, 2019
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Uefa order final 18 seconds of match to be replayed after refereeing error

Has European football’s governing body just set a very dangerous precedent?

Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

EUROPEAN FOOTBALL’S GOVERNING body has ordered the final 18 seconds of England Women’s U19 European Championships qualifier against Norway to be replayed after a refereeing mistake.

The Elite Round Group 4 qualifier will resume at 9.45pm at Seaview stadium in Belfast this evening with England, 2-1 down, retaking a penalty in the 96th minute.

The decision was taken by Uefa — following an appeal by the English FA — because the referee, Marija Kurtes, had wrongly denied England the opportunity to retake the penalty following encroachment as Leah Williamson successfully converted the original spot kick.

Instead, the German official disallowed the goal and awarded a free kick to Norway.

A Uefa statement read:

“We originally wrote that Norway had qualified but on 8 April the Uefa Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body (CEDB) announced that Norway’s game against England on 4 April will be replayed from the minute a penalty kick was awarded to England, who were 2-1 down at the time.”

Both England and Norway must start the match with the same 11 players who finished Saturday’s game. However, Williamson does not have to take the penalty this time around.

The referee’s decision, it seems, is no longer final.

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Steve O'Rourke

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