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Oct 2, 2008

Poland to forfeit World Cup qualifiers?

The crisis around Euro 2012 hosts Poland has deepened after FIFA has warned the Polish authorities the country's two World Cup qualifiers next month will be forfeited unless the government reinstates their football association by October 6.

The Polish football federation was suspended on Monday for allegedly failing to address corruption, and the government have appointed an administrator, Robert Zawlocki, to run the organisation.

But both UEFA and FIFA say they will not recognise the administrator - both take a firm line that there should be no political interference in national associations.

UEFA on Tuesday warned the situation could jeopardise Poland's hosting of Euro 2012.

Poland are due to face the Czech Republic on October 11 and Slovakia four days later in Group Three, which also includes Northern Ireland.

If they forfeit the matches, their opponents would be awarded regulation 3-0 victories.

A statement on FIFA's website on Thursday read: "FIFA has today sent a letter to the Polish FA (PZPN) president Michal Listkiewicz in order to stress the fact that the internationally-recognised authorities of the PZPN must be restored in the headquarters of the federation in order to be able to adequately organise the two 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches Poland vs Czech Republic and Slovakia vs Poland scheduled for 11 and 15 October.

"The letter indicates a deadline of Monday, October 6 at noon for those authorities recognised by FIFA and UEFA to receive full control of the Polish FA premises, statutory competences and decision-making process, and for the cancellation of the appointment of the 'commissioner'.

"Finally, the Polish FA is reminded of the potential consequences defined in case of violation of the FIFA Statutes and of the Regulations of the 2010 FIFA World Cup."

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