Real Madrid have been disqualified from the Copa del Rey after fielding Denis Cheryshev in the first leg of their round-of-32 tie against Cadiz on Wednesday, according to widespread reports in Spain.
The Russia midfielder started and scored in the 3-1 victory despite being yet to serve a suspension for receiving three yellow cards in last season’s competition when on loan at Villarreal.
Cadiz submitted an official complaint to the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) after the match, but Madrid insisted they had not been notified that the player was ineligible.
Speaking on Thursday following a board meeting, Madrid president Florentino Perez had said: “Madrid have not named an ineligible player. This is the opinion after consulting the legal services of Real Madrid.
“After analysing what happened, the penalty for three yellow cards should not be considered effective because nobody told the player of his punishment, as stated in Article 41 [of competition regulations].
“The sanction is not effective, and even if it were, we believe it would be considered void with the application of the final paragraph of section 12: ‘At the end of the third round of the Copa del Rey, there will be a complete cancelling of penalty cycles for all concerned’.
“We don’t believe anyone acted negligently. This is our conclusion. Cheryshev is calm. He played because he was convinced he was able to.”
Perez had also confirmed the club would be appealing any sanction, saying: “We will certainly take it to the TAD, because we have a duty to defend what we believe is our right.
“If there had been any negligence by anyone, any notification that had gone astray or anyone who had not acted correctly, we would acknowledge that and we would apologise and we would take the measures we have to take. But the fact is that, quite honestly, it was impossible for us to know about it.”