In a first for an international football game – certainly for one of this magnitude – the World Cup Qualifying game between Brazil and Copa America holders, Argentina has descended into chaos inside the first ten minutes.
In case you were wondering about WHY the health officials and cops stopped the Brazil v Argentina game, it's down to Martinez, Buendia, Romero + Lo Celso. https://t.co/IolKwkWMCg
— Gabriele Marcotti (@Marcotti) September 5, 2021
World Cup Qualifier Descends into Chaos
As a result of Brazilian COVID-19 measures, the game has been halted within the first ten minutes. In utterly bizarre scenes, local authorities – including police and medical professionals – stormed onto the pitch to stop the game. Whereas this is likely because of Premier League based players such as Emiliano Martínez, Emi Buendía, Christian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso (you must quarantine after travelling from the UK to Brazil, as the UK is on the “Red List”), it is unclear why authorities chose to wait until the day of the game to take action.
Early reports also appear to suggest that the players had claimed they had not been in England prior to travelling, which would, of course, be false. The event unfolding in such a manner ensures that this story won’t be dying any time soon as debates begin to make international headlines. No doubt, tomorrow’s headlines will cite the game between Brazil and Argentina descending into chaos.
What This Means for the Game
With the game having now been officially postponed to a yet undecided date, it is clear this game must be played at some point in the future. Unless rules are loosened in Brazil at that time, or the game is played in another location, the likely possibility is that Premier League based players will not be able to play in the fixture. This would be a shame not just for Argentina, who, of course, rely on these players, but also for the Premier League.
International representation is a crucial aspect of the league and the problems posed to Argentina therefore hit the top English division. Given that the four players at the centre of the incident come from Aston Villa and Tottenham Hotspur, respectively, both of these clubs will no doubt be dragged in to the debates set to dominate sporting headlines over the next couple of days. There will be more on this story as we get it.
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