The World Cup qualifier between Brazil and Argentina was called off minutes after it began at the Corinthians Arena in So Paulo, Brazil, as Brazilian health authorities arrived on the field and took many Argentinian soccer players away.
The Brazilian Health Regulatory Agency (Anvisa) had requested assistance from the country’s Federal Police to prevent four Argentinian players from competing in the qualifier, claiming that the players had made false statements upon their arrival in Brazil, omitting that they had been in the United Kingdom in the previous 14 days.
According to Brazilian Covid-19 laws, anyone who visited the United Kingdom 14 days before to arrival is not allowed to enter the nation.
“Anvisa considers the situation to be a serious health risk,” the organization said in a statement. “As a result, we advised the local health authorities to establish an immediate quarantine of players, who are prohibited from participating in any activity and must be prevented from remaining in Brazilian territory.”
Anvisa has requested the expulsion of Emiliano Martnez, Emiliano Buenda, Giovani Lo Celso, and Cristian Romero, all English Premier League players, according to CNN affiliate CNN Brasil.
“The match arranged by FIFA between Brazil and Argentina for the World Cup qualifications is suspended due to the decision of the game’s referee,” CONMEBOL stated via Twitter.
CONMEBOL went on to say, “The match delegate and the referee will file a report with FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee, which will determine the next steps. These processes will be conducted in accordance with existing legislation.”
The match has been halted, according to FIFA, and more information will be released “in due course.”
“What occurred today is extremely terrible for football, it’s a really negative image,” Argentinian Football Association (AFA) president Claudio Tapia said in a statement. CONMEBOL requested the players to go to the changing room after four people came on to disrupt the match to make a message.
“You can’t talk about lying here since every South American event is governed by health regulations.” Each country’s health authorities authorized a protocol, which we strictly followed.”
Lionel Scaloni, the manager of Argentina’s national team, said the events were “extremely sad” and that both teams wanted to play the match.
“This saddens me greatly. “Whether anything happened or didn’t happen, it wasn’t the proper time to make that intervention,” Scaloni said in the statement.”
“It should have been a celebration for everyone concerned, with the finest players in the world taking part. I’d like the Argentine people to realize that as head coach, I’m responsible for defending my players “Scaloni explained. “They never informed us that they wouldn’t be able to play the game. We, like the guys from Brazil, were eager to play the game.”