Football’s governing body FIFA has vetoed a request by Porto’s Brazil-born midfielder Fernando to play for Portugal in the World Cup.
The 26-year-old was granted Portuguese nationality last December having represented Porto since signing from Brazil’s Vila Nova in 2007, reports Xinhua.
But in a statement released on Friday, the Portuguese Football Federation revealed FIFA had dashed the player’s hope of representing his adopted country at this year’s World Cup.
“FIFA considered that the player did not hold Portuguese nationality when he played for Brazil in the under—20 World Cup qualifiers, as required by federation regulations,” the statement said.
Fernando had hoped to join a long list of Brazil-born players to switch their allegiance.
Recent examples include Deco (Portugal), Marcos Senna (Spain), Pepe (Portugal) and Diego Costa (Spain).