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Bolivia forfeits two World Cup qualifiers due to ineligible player


South American World Cup qualifying received a major shakeup on Tuesday due to an ineligible player.

FIFA announced on Tuesday that Bolivia will forfeit two matches after fielding an ineligible player in a pair of September qualifiers against Chile and Peru. Bolivia defeated Peru, 2-0, while tying Chile, 0-0, but will no forfeit the two matches by identical 3-0 scorelines.

The points lift Chile to a tie with Argentina in fifth place, a position that qualifies for a playoff against an Oceania team.

The player in question was Nelson Cabrera, who entered as a substitute for Bolivia in both matches. The defender previously played for Paraguay’s national team.


  1. Apparently, Bolivia allows citizenship after 3 years of residence which Cabrera met so he got his Bolivian passport. What the Bolivian Federation failed to realize was that FIFA still required 5 years of residency for naturalized citizens even if the country required less.

  2. He started against the US in the warm up friendly. According to wikipedia he played in one friendly for Paraguay almost ten years ago, so it must be a case of not filing the correct paper work. He also played in two Copa America games.

      • One match nine years ago, I doubt too many people remembered around the region. Maybe somebody from Chile complained. I doubt it was Paraguay because it hurts them in the standings.

  3. How does this even happen? Isn’t there a very specific process of transferring between federations, where it’s black and white clear who you are eligible for?


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