Bundesliga side Wolfsburg are considering their ‘legal options’ after being thrown out of this season’s German Cup for making too many substitutions.
Mark van Bommel’s side required extra time to see off the challenge of fourth tier side Preussen Munster, whom they eventually defeated 3-1 on 8 August.
It was the Dutchman’s debut match in the dugout for Wolfsburg, but he made a major error by making one too many substitutions in the clash.
The German club made three substitutions in normal time before making an additional three in the additional 30 minutes, when only two had been allocated by the rules of the competition.
Wolfsburg had dominated the encounter – having over 30 shots at goal, averaging one every three minutes – but trailed 1-0 into the closing stages, when an equaliser earned them extra time.
Josip Brekalo’s strike had appeared to rescue van Bommel’s side status in the competition as he equalised in the final minute after Marcel Hoffmeier had given Preussen Munster the lead.
The Bundesliga side then scored two more goals in extra time – thanks to Wout Weghorst and Ridle Baku – but only after three further substitutions – one more than permitted – were made.
The German Football Federation handed Munster a 2-0 win after a hearing at their sporting court, which has left Wolfsburg assessing their legal options on how to respond to the decision.
Wolfsburg chief executive Tim Schumacher said: “We are disappointed and wanted a different outcome to the hearing.
“We do not agree with the decision and will now check legal options.”
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After confirming the decision, Stephan Oberholz, deputy chairman of the sports court, told reporters: “The clubs themselves are responsible for substitutions.
“One of their basic duties is to find out about substitution options and to act accordingly.
“Wolfsburg violated this duty and thus carelessly and avoidably committed the central error by making the illegal sixth substitution.”
The decision was derived at because the central issue of the error was that of the club rather than the officials in charge of the match, it was declared.
The draw for the second round of the German Cup takes place on 29 August, with Wolfsburg required to lodge any legal appeals to finalise their position before that is made.
The Bundesliga outfit have already made a self-depreciating gesture following the incident by allowing fans who had bought five tickets for their Bundesliga clash against Bochum, a sixth ticket free of charge.
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