FIFA might suspend Peru FA and select Italy for 2018 World Cup

Noceda told that the government is not willing to take control of Peruvian FA.

Fifa World Cup
Representative image Reuters

The four-time World Cup champions Italy still has a chance to board the flight to Russia for 2018 World Cup if Peruvian government takes control of their football federation, which is not allowed by FIFA.

The South American country sealed their place in 2018 World Cup by a 2-0 aggregate victory over New Zealand in a play-off on 15 November. They have been preparing for their first appearance in the world soccer tournament since 1982.

The Peruvian national news organization called Libero.Pe reported on 22 November that Paloma Noceda, the congresswoman from Peru has proposed a bill which would bring the football governing body of Peru under the control of country's Institute of sports (Instituto Peruano del Deporte – IPD).

On the other hand, FIFA (The Fédération Internationale de Football Association), who suspended Iraqi Football Association (IFA), Kenya Football Federation (KFF) and Mali's Football Association (FEMAFOOT) because of the governmental interference, might take the similar action against Peruvian Football Federation (FPF), if Peru tries to ignore the governing body's rulebook.

"Fifa sent a letter to the Peruvian FA on 23 November 2017, informing them that the current draft of the Peruvian Sports Law, which was presented to the respective committee of the Peruvian congress on 2 October 2017, includes certain items that, if implemented, would contravene the Fifa Statutes. Fifa will continue to monitor the situation," a FIFA spokesperson told BBC.

According to FIFA regulations, "if any association withdraws or is excluded from the competition, the FIFA Organising Committee shall decide on the matter at its sole discretion and take whatever action is deemed necessary".

It means FIFA could replace Peru with New Zealand, who failed to secure their place in World Cup after the defeat or another country from the same confederation. The world soccer governing body might also go with official world ranking to select a nation for 2018 World Cup.

If FIFA decides to select a country according to the ranking list then Italy will receive a World Cup berth which they lost to earn after a defeat by 1-0 aggregate in a playoff match against Sweden on 13 November.

On the other hand, Noceda told in an interview with Peruvian radio station Exitosa on 22 November that the government is not willing to take control of Peruvian FA.

"I don't know how any part of the proposal could have been interpreted in this way. Maybe these worries about potential state interference could come from the FPF (the Peruvian FA) or from FIFA, who could see it this way, but we in the commission, and I believe everybody in congress, want the best for sport in this country," she concluded.

Noceda also said on 21 November via Twitter, "Peru is already in the World Cup and will go to the world ... There is no Bill that prevents it!"