Irish Premiership: Glenavon defender Elebert in eligibility row

Glenavon signed former Derry City defender David Elebert in January 2015
Glenavon signed former Derry City defender David Elebert in January 2015

Glenavon defender David Elebert is at the centre of the latest Premiership eligibility row after he played in the Boxing Day draw with Portadown.

Elebert was suspended for one game from 19 December for five bookings, with three during reserve games.

Glenavon believed that after Elebert sat out a reserve match last week he would be eligible for the Ports clash.

They said the IFA cleared Elebert to play but IFA rules state that bans apply to the "more senior team".

Elebert's fifth yellow card, which triggered the suspension, was picked up in a reserve fixture.

More senior team

However, Rule 15.4 of the IFA Disciplinary Code states: "A player who receives cautions for more than 1 team within his club will have his cautions amalgamated and must serve any suspension......with the more senior team."

Glenavon added that they queried Elebert's eligibility with the Irish FA and he was only selected following its advice.

Portadown were themselves punished for fielding an eligible player against Ards earlier this season.

Robert Garrett scored in a 3-1 win but the midfielder was suspended for the game and the Ports forfeited the points while Ards were awarded a 3-0 victory.

A similar outcome in the Elebert case following the 2-2 draw would be a major boost for Portadown, who are currently 10 points adrift at the bottom.