Burnley narrowly escape FA Cup disqualification after nightmare mix-up pre-match

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Premier League side Burnley narrowly escaped being disqualified from the FA Cup after naming a suspended player in their original starting line-up to take on Bournemouth.

When announcing their team for the fifth-round match, the Clarets had Erik Pieters starting at left-back.

But Pieters had been booked against both MD Dons and Fulham in Burnley’s previous FA Cup ties this campaign, meaning he was suspended for Tuesday’s match against the Cherries.

But there was a mix-up at the Lancashire club, which meant that Pieters was named in their starting line-up.

Thankfully for Burnley, an eagle-eyed television reporter spotted the error in time for Sean Dyche to correct it, saving them from an almost-certain disqualification.

Instead of Pieters, 21-year-old Anthony Driscoll-Glennon took his place at full-back, for his first start in claret.

The close call was revealed before kick-off by BT Sport commentator Paul Dempsey.

“It was a very late change to the Burnley team selection tonight,” Dempsey said on BT Sport.

“We’re all very indebted to out stats man, Joel Miller, who correctly pointed out that he believed Erik Pieters, named in the original team, was in fact suspended for this game.

“The consequences of that for Burnley could have been very severe. Driscoll-Glennon went onto the team sheet after our reporter, Natalie Quirk, made the enquiry of Burnley.”

If the error had not been spotted in time, Burnley would have faced a heavy punishment, most likely resulting in their disqualification from the competition, regardless of the result against manager-less Bournemouth.

Driscoll-Glennon is yet to play a league game for Burnley and his only league appearances came on loan at Grimsby Town last season.

He had made one substitute appearance for Burnley in the FA Cup before and another in the EFL Cup, but this was his first start.

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  • Even if Pieters had been named, it would not have mattered with Championship side Bournemouth dumping the Clarets out of the cup thanks to a 2-0 win.

    Burnley manager Sean Dyche praised Bournemouth for their response to the situation.

    "It was an oversight. We did notice it, Bournemouth noticed it and we managed to sort it before kick-off. Bournemouth, very gentlemanly, said they thought we had a player who was not eligible," he told the BBC.

    "You would like to think if it doesn't happen in a sporting manner there could be a story the other way but fair play to them."

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    • FA Cup
    • Premier League
    • Burnley FC
    • Bournemouth FC

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