Barcelona avoid Copa del Rey disqualification

Photo of Barcelona avoid Copa del Rey disqualification

Barcelona avoided disqualification from the Copa del Rey after the Royal Spanish Football Federation rejected Levante's claim that the Catalan side fielded an ineligible player.

The federation announced Friday that Levante submitted its formal complaint outside the 24-hour window after the match, which means the claim was sent in too late to be considered.

The defending Copa del Rey champions were accused of breaking the rules by using 19-year-old defender Juan Brandariz in Levante's first-leg victory. Levante argued that Brandariz was ineligible to play because he received a one-match ban while with Barcelona's reserve team.

Barcelona won the second leg 3-0 to secure a 4-2 aggregate win and move on to the quarterfinals, where Ernesto Valverde's men will take on Sevilla.

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