BERLIN : Portugal captain Luis Figo is free to face England in the World Cup quarter-finals after FIFA said he was highly unlikely to face any action for head-butting Dutch player Mark van Bommel.
FIFA spokesman Markus Siegler was asked if the disciplinary committee could suspend Figo after viewing a videotape of the incident from Portugal's 1-0 victory in the stormy last 16 match on Sunday.
"No, because it was sanctioned immediately by the referee," Siegler told a daily press briefing.
"The referee's report came in last night and it will be looked at by the relevant people.
"But the offence was sanctioned immediately by the referee.
"It is only where there is a clear disciplinary issue which has not been acted upon by the referee that the committee can look at it."
Russian referee Valentin Ivanov showed Figo a yellow card for shoving van Bommel, but in the same melee, the Dutch striker belatedly collapsed to the ground after what appeared to be minimal contact from Figo's head.
The bad-tempered match set a new World Cup record after four red cards were awarded, reducing both teams to nine players by the final whistle.
FIFA President Sepp Blatter criticised Ivanov's handling of the game.
"The referee's actions harmed what could have been an excellent football match," he told Portuguese media.
"We saw a very intense match between two teams which like to attack but they were not helped by the referee.
"I think the refereeing itself deserves a yellow card."
FIFA said they had no further comment to make on Ivanov.
Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari jumped to the defence of his captain.
"Jesus Christ would have turned the other cheek but Figo is not Jesus Christ. I thought he was much more correct than the Dutch player."
Portugal face England in Gelsenkirchen on Saturday for a place in the semi-finals. -