This is why Costa Rica cancelled Iraq friendly as Sunderland's Jewison Bennette waits to make impact

Costa Rica’s World Cup preparations have been hit after a passport issue caused a friendly with Iraq to be cancelled.

Sunderland have two representatives away in Qatar for the World Cup, with defender Bailey Wright and forward Jewison Bennette representing Australia and Costa Rica respectively.

But Bennette and his Costa Rican teammates were left frustrated after a late change in plans.

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The Costa Rican federation said in a statement. “The match against Iraq was suspended.

Jewison Bennette.

“An agreement that was made with the non-stamping of passports was not respected and for this reason it was decided not to enter Iraq and cancel the match,” added the statement.

The Daily Mail report: “There was a concern that the Iraqi passport stamp would cause difficulties in accessing other countries in the future.”

Costa Rica’s tournament begins against 2010 champions Spain at 4pm on Wednesday November 23. They then face a tie against Japan at 10am on Sunday, November 27 before ending the group stages against 2014 champions Germany on Thursday, December 1. That game will be a 7pm kick-off and, like their previous two group games, will also be broadcast on ITV.

If Costa Rica progressed out of what many are describing as the ‘group of death’, then they would face one of Morocco, Croatia, Canada or Belgium.

The Championship is taking a three-week break while the start of the Qatar World Cup gets underway, while the Premier League doesn’t return until Boxing Day.

How will Sunderland benefit financially?

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FIFA have set aside £189million to help clubs who have players away on international duty during the tournament. Each club will receive around £9,000 per player for every day they are away on international duty.

However, a club will only receive the full amount if the player was signed within two years of the tournament. Therefore, whilst the Black Cats will receive the full payment for Bailey Wright’s participation, they will have to share the money from Bennette’s participation with his previous employers.

If Australia were to defy the odds in Qatar and reach the semi-finals, then Sunderland could be in-line for a payment of around £300,000.