• World Cup

No FIFA action over Thierry Henry handball

ESPN Soccernet staff
January 18, 2010
Thierry Henry looks on sheepishly after his handball swept France into the World Cup © Getty Images

FIFA has announced that no action will be taken against Thierry Henry over the handball that helped secure victory for France in the World Cup qualification play-off against Republic of Ireland.

It had been believed that Henry could be suspended, fined or given a warning for the offence, which prompted calls from the Football Association of Ireland to replay the match as France edged through into the World Cup finals by a solitary goal after extra time in the two-legged tie.

However, FIFA has said that there is no legal basis by which they could punish the player for his actions and, as such, he will be free to participate in France's opening match against Uruguay on June 11.

A FIFA statement read: "On December 2 2009, the FIFA Executive Committee asked the FIFA Disciplinary Committee to analyse the handling offence committed by Thierry Henry during the France v Republic of Ireland match on November 18 2009, and to consider the possible disciplinary consequences.

"At its meeting on January 18 2010, the Disciplinary Committee reached the conclusion that there was no legal foundation for the committee to consider the case because handling the ball cannot be regarded as a serious infringement as stipulated in article 77a) of the FIFA Disciplinary Code. There is no other legal text that would allow the committee to impose sanctions for any incidents missed by match officials."

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