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FIFA to reject new Irish 2010 request

  • Top FIFA official says it is "impossible" for Ireland to be given World Cup place
  • Ireland had asked for a 33rd berth to be created in wake of qualifying controversy
  • Thierry Henry's handball, which led to France's winning goal, caused worldwide outrage
  • FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke says matter will still be raised at meeting

(CNN) -- A top FIFA official has ruled out any chance of the Republic of Ireland being handed an extra place at the 2010 World Cup finals in the wake of the Thierry Henry handball controversy.

Irish football officials had requested that a 33rd berth be created for next year's tournament in South Africa after the world governing body refused their bid to replay the second leg of the playoff against France.

Ireland lost 2-1 on aggregate as William Gallas leveled the scores on the night in extra-time in Paris after striker Henry handled the ball in the build-up to the goal.

"We have to be clear that Ireland will not be invited to play at the 2010 World Cup," FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke told reporters at a press conference in Cape Town on Tuesday ahead of Friday's draw for the showpiece event.

"There was a request made by the Irish FA when we met them in Zurich a few days ago. They asked the question, but the FIFA president was very clear in saying it was impossible, because if we did so then why not Costa Rica and others?

Video: Irish MP demands football rematch
Video: Henry's foul play

"We told them that because they were making a special request that we would bring it to the attention of the FIFA executive committee members, and it is what we will do tomorrow.

"But you can imagine what it would mean -- I would not say it's a nonsense, but it is impossible. There is no hope at all that there will be more than 32 teams at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa."

Costa Rica were also unhappy at the manner of their playoff defeat against Uruguay due to a dispute over an offside goal, and this incident along with the France-Ireland affair is expected to be discussed by FIFA on Wednesday as part of a more general meeting about the use of technology during matches.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter suggested on Monday that new regulations might be implemented before the World Cup kicks off in June.