Ex-Arsenal defender suspended for failing drugs test

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Former Arsenal defender Andre Santos has been handed a thirty day suspension after testing positive for a banned substance.

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ESPN Brazil report that the substance found in the Brazilian’s system was Hydrochlorothiazide – which isn’t a performance-enhancing drug, but a diuretic designed to avoid the body absorbing excessive amounts of salt.

According to ESPN, the presence of Hydrochlorothiazide was initially discovered during a clash between Ribeirao Preto and Sao Bento in February, and a second sample confirmed the substance in his system in May, which has consequently resulted in an official punishment.

The Sports Justice Tribunal of Sao Paulo have given the former Arsenal left-back a provisional 30 day ban.

His laywer Antonio Carlos de Azevedo has stated that the results are being investigated, with his client vehemently denying any use of the banned substance, and he argues that there could have been unintentional contamination.

Santos joined the Gunners in August 2011 before leaving in February 2013 – following an underwhelming time in North London. The 32-year-old is most remembered by the Arsenal supporters for swapping shirts with Robin van Persie at half-time during the club’s clash with Manchester United.

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