In a shocking development, the mammoth World Cup qualifier between Argentina and Brazil has been stopped by the home nation’s authorities due to a reported infringement of Covid-19 protocol.
Roger Bennett of NBC has reported that the Brazilian Federal Police walked onto the pitch, thereby stopping the match, due to an issue regarding the four Premier League players for Argentina.
It’s claimed that Spurs pair Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso, as well as Aston Villa duo Emil Martinez and Emi Buendia, failed to disclose that they are based in the UK upon arriving in Brazil.
Romero, Lo Celso and Martinez all started the tie, whilst Buendia is not in the matchday squad.
Per one of the latest updates from Roy Nemer, the Argentina players left the pitch, with Lionel Messi now returning to speak to Brazil boss Tite, pal Neymar and a few other Samba stars.
Surreal: Brazil v Argentina stopped inside 7 mins by Brazilian Federal Police walking on field to detain 4 Argentinian Premier League players who failed to disclose they are based in Britain, breaking COVID protocols upon entering Brazil. Chaos ensued ???? pic.twitter.com/ANG5L61SaK
— roger bennett (@rogbennett) September 5, 2021
BREAKING: Brazil vs Argentina has been suspended as the Brazilian Health Authorities have stormed onto the pitch to deport Emiliano Martinez, Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero.#avfc #thfc pic.twitter.com/g9tGmV1pNt
— Sam Street (@samstreetwrites) September 5, 2021
Lionel Messi back on the pitch as he speaks with Brazil coach Tite, Neymar and other Brazilian players. The Brazil team have remained on the pitch the entire time as the Argentine players left the pitch.
— Roy Nemer (@RoyNemer) September 5, 2021
Brazilian police have walked onto the pitch in an attempt to detain Argentina’s Giovani Lo Celso, Cristian Romero, Emi Martinez and Emi Buendia for a reported breach of Covid protocols.
Unbelievable scenes. pic.twitter.com/fk9hK8vIpk
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) September 5, 2021
Just after kick-off, Brazilian health authorities have entered the pitch and brought a stop to the game between Brazil and Argentina ?
Reports before the game suggested local authorities had ordered Argentina’s UK based players to be deported due to a failure to quarantine ? pic.twitter.com/aSuXZyzVPA
— Premier Sports (@PremierSportsTV) September 5, 2021
Pictures from Premier Sports and beIN Sports.
Trouble has surrounded the Premier League players who represent South American countries from before the international break even started.
It’s clearly been an uphill battle to get English top-flight players away for duty in the first place, due to all of South America being on the UK government’s red list, but this is something else entirely…
Any possible breach of Brazil’s Covid-19 protocol would be a serious offence as it’s been reported that the authorities are looking to detain and potentially even deport the players in question.
The situation is developing and hopefully the relevant authorities share official word on the apparent issues as soon as possible, which have now ruined South America’s most illustrious qualifier.