Real Madrid's Russian midfielder Denis Cheryshev (C) celebrates after scoring during the Spanish Copa del Rey (King's Cup) football match Cadiz CF vs Real Madrid at the Ramon de Carranza in Cadiz on December 2, 2015 (AFP)
Real Madrid edged closer to the Spanish Cup exit door Thursday after third division Cadiz appealed their midweek cup defeat because the capital giants had inadvertently fielded a suspended player.
Cadiz confirmed Thursday that having been given the green light by Spanish football authorities overnight, they had launched an appeal.
In the first leg of their fourth round tie on Wednesday Russian international Denis Cheryshev not only started the match but opened the scoring in Madrid's 3-1 win too.
But he shouldn't have been on the field as he was due to serve a one-match ban in the cup after picking up three yellow cards whilst on loan at Villarreal last season.
In their statement Cadiz claimed they were sorry things had come to this pass saying "we reaffirm our respect for Real Madrid and to their fans, we will make no comment on the matter but leave it to the authorities to decide how to settle it."
Spanish rules are clear, Cheryshev should have been banned for the match. Last season Spanish football saw second division Osasuna booted out of the cup in an almost identical case.
As soon as Real realised their error on Wednesday they substituted the player and claim that neither the authorities nor Villarreal had warned them.
"Clearly we didn't know. Villarreal and the federation hadn't warned us," said Madrid boss Rafael Benitez.
"When we knew we substituted him to show good faith."
Real Madrid director of institutional relations Emilio Butragueno also laid the blame at the Spanish Football Federation and Villarreal for not informing Madrid of the ban.
"I also want to say that Cheryshev himself didn't know of any possible ban," Butragueno said.
(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)