The Disciplinary Committee of the FAI has dismissed a protest made by Waterford United relating to Dundalk striker Michael Rafter.
The claim made by the Blues was that Rafter was ineligible to play the second leg of the Promotion/Relegation Play-off Final for Dundalk almost two weeks ago because he was not properly registered with the Louth club as he had signed for the club after the transfer deadline day back in February.
The Disciplinary Committee heard submissions from representatives of both Waterford and Dundalk, as well as the Airtricity League, before making their decision.
The statement from the FAI read as follows:
“The rules regarding registration and transfer of players allow for their movement from the amateur game to the professional game within the professional registration periods.
“The Disciplinary Committee ruled that Michael Rafter’s transfer to Dundalk complied with the rules and therefore he was eligible to play in the fixture on November 2, 2012”
Dundalk won the Play-Off Final 4-2 on aggregate, drawing 2-2 at Oriel Park’s synthetic pitch before winning 2-0 at Waterford’s RSC to retain their place in the Airtricity League Premier Division for next season. Rafter scored both Dundalk goals in the tie deciding 2-0 win in Waterford.
Waterford can appeal the decision to the FAI Appeals Committee, but they are virtually certain not to do so as an appeal would almost certainly be a waste of time, given that all the facts of the situation have already been brought to light.