Ineligible Malouda plays for French Guiana in Gold Cup
HOUSTON (AP) Florent Malouda, a veteran of 80 international matches for France, played for French Guiana in CONCACAF Gold Cup on Tuesday night despite being ruled ineligible for the tournament.
The 37-year-old midfielder captained French Guiana and played the entire match in a 0-0 tie against Honduras. But the game is likely to be ruled a 3-0 victory by forfeit for Honduras because Malouda was on the field.
Malouda was born in French Guiana, played for France from 2004-12 and scored nine international goals. Under FIFA’s rules, he would be ineligible to play for another national team.
At the club level, he helped Chelsea win the Premier League in 2010 and the Champions League in 2012.
CONCACAF, the governing body for North and Central America and the Caribbean, says it has referred the matter to its Gold Cup disciplinary committee.
French Guiana is an overseas department of the French Republic and is a member of CONCACAF but it is not a member of FIFA, soccer’s world governing body.
With the match counted as a draw, Canada leads Group A with four points on goal difference over Costa Rica, and Honduras and French Guiana have one point ahead. The top two nations in each of the three groups advance to the quarterfinals along with the top two third-place teams.