Let’s have Paul Tenorio, Four Four Two reporter, take it away.
Have some major MLS news that could impact the playoff race. It's a doozy. This is going to be a few tweets, guys. (Where's my 280?!) (1/5)— Paul Tenorio (@PaulTenorio) October 2, 2017
Per FIFA rules, once a team lineup sheet is given to referees, if a player is changed out of the lineup he is ineligible for that game.(2/5)— Paul Tenorio (@PaulTenorio) October 2, 2017
On Saturday, FC Dallas swapped Tesho Akindele into starting XI for Michael Barrios. Barrios then subbed into the game in the 84th min (3/5) pic.twitter.com/nqHrU4QOoK— Paul Tenorio (@PaulTenorio) October 2, 2017
Per FIFA rules, the match should be forfeited, which would drop FCD to 41 pts and pull Orlando City to 41 pts, just 2 behind RBNY (4/5)— Paul Tenorio (@PaulTenorio) October 2, 2017
I am told the league is aware of the violation and looking into it. No update yet as to what will occur. Plenty at stake, obviously. (5/5)— Paul Tenorio (@PaulTenorio) October 2, 2017
OK. So. Yeah.
This is obviously a huge thing. To sum it up: Dallas, he claims, made a late lineup change, then they put that player into the match later on. It seems innocuous enough, but that’s a pretty big violation.
If a player takes part in an official match despite being ineligible, his team will be sanctioned by forfeiting the match (cf. art. 31) and paying a minimum fine of CHF 6,000.
This one seems pretty clear cut, but this is MLS, and anything can happen.
If the match is forfeited, that’ll leave FC Dallas with 41 points, meaning if Real Salt Lake wins the final two matches of the season, they’d have to win their three to pass them in the playoff scenarios. Any such decision might not have quite the same impact in the Eastern Conference, as that would leave Orlando City SC two points behind New York Red Bulls having played one fewer game.
Let’s just anxiously await more news here.