Liverpool youngster Rafael Paez may not be able to play again this season, as FIFA blocked his loan move to Eibar.
An administration error by the La Liga side saw football's governing body block the short-term transfer due to issues with the documentation. FIFA have also dismissed Eibar's appeal against the decision.
Paez at Liverpool
Liverpool signed the 20-year-old from Real Madrid in 2013 and sent him on a season-long loan to Bologna last summer. However he was not getting the game time the Merseyside club were expecting and so they recalled him in January with the intention of re-sending him out to a club where he would gain match experience.
Paez’s agent, Luis Carlos Fernandez, told IBTimes UK, brought to our attention through Liverpool Echo: “As far as we know the player is unable to play until the end of the season but we have a meeting with Liverpool officials to see if we can find another solution.
“As of today (10 March), the player plans to stay at Eibar just training until the end of the campaign but let’s see what Liverpool say because they are the owners of their rights.
“In Spain he cannot play this season either at Eibar or in another club because it is impossible to register him out of the two transfer windows – summer and January – but maybe the FA regulation allow to do something. Let’s see.”
No luck for Eibar
Eibar were left ruing the decision and made a statement saying: “SD Eibar sealed a loan deal on 30th January 2015 for Rafa Paez from Liverpool, and the same day, sent all the corresponding documentation to FIFA, within the established period of time for him to be granted the transfer.
“However, FIF announced on 2nd February 2015 that there had been an administrative error in processing the deal which needed resolving immediately, which occurred immediately. Days later, FIFA communicated to Eibar that the transfer was denied for having sent the paperwork out of the prescribed time period.
“On 16th February 2015, Eibar presented a case to the sole administrative judge at FIFA, a formal request to grant the transfer, along with two documents signed by Rafa Páez and the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), which endorsed the position of the club.
“Having analysed all the documentation, said judge has confirmed the denial of the transfer, despite that all parties were in agreement that it was a simple administrative error, which was corrected immediately and with the documentation sent on time.
“With this decision, FIFA leaves Rafa Paez without the opportunity of playing for the remainder of this season.”
After spending several years with the Spanish giants in the capital, Paez impressed on trial at Liverpool, with Brendan Rodgers making the decision to sign him up. He made 15 appearances for Liverpool U21's in the 2013/14 season.
He has also appeared for the first-team in a pre-season game against Shamrock Rovers at the Aviva Stadium last summer.