England friendly 'not valid'

Fifa to investigate use of seven subs against Trinidad and Tobago

Fifa are to investigate whether England's 3-0 victory over Trinidad and Tobago should be allowed to stand as an official international match.

Fifa rules state that no team can use more than six substitutes in international friendlies but it was thought that England and Trinidad and Tobago had been given permission to use seven in Sunday's game at Port of Spain.

Fabio Capello made seven changes during the game and a Fifa spokesman has now revealed that no such deal had been agreed.

"We did not give special dispensation to make up to seven substitutions in the Trinidad and Tobago match," he told The Sun.

The Football Association have responded by insisting that they did have Fifa's backing.


A spokesman said: "The opportunity to use seven substitutes was cleared in advance of the game by Fifa, Trinidad and Tobago representative Jack Warner, the Fifa delegate for the game and the match referee.

"There is no way we would have gone ahead using seven subs without the approval that we were given."

The option to bring on a seventh substitute was given to the sides to mark Trinidad and Tobago's centenary of football.

However, if the game is scrubbed off the record books it would leave international debuts for Stephen Warnock, Dean Ashton, Joe Hart and Phil Jagielka null and void.

Jermain Defoe and Gareth Barry's goals would not count and David Beckham's return as captain would be of no value.