Explained: How Glentoran's Curtis Allen was cleared to play in European play-off against Linfield
Glentoran star Curtis Allen IS free to play in tonight's Europa League play-off tie at Linfield.
The striker had been sent off for violent conduct at the tail end of his side's 4-2 win over Dungannon Swifts last month and was issued with a three match ban.
However, less than five hours before kick-off, it was announced that his ban had been overturned and Allen was free to play at Windsor Park.
Glentoran's first appeal
Glentoran appealed the suspension on the grounds that an obvious error had been made by the referee. Under Article 1.9 of the IFA Disciplinary Code, the IFA Disciplinary Comittee has the power to 'rectify' such errors but instead the committee ruled that match official Shane Andrews "had not made a clear and obvious error" and the appeal was dismissed.
Glentoran's second appeal
The club then appealed to the IFA Appeals Board, as is their right under Article 14 of the IFA's Articles of Association.
This appeal was made on the grounds that Allen denied acting violently, claiming that he was "the victim of an aggressive action rather than the aggressor" and as a result, Glentoran considered the punishment 'disproportionate'.
Using video footage, the IFA Appeals Board have now reached a majority view that "the appeal should be allowed and the red card issued to Mr Allen rescinded". The Appeals Committee ruled that the referee Shane Andrews had, in their view, made "a clear and obvious error."
Bemused is probably the word.
Belfast Telegraph Digital