In a bizarre turn of events, a FIFA World Cup Qualifier between Brazil and Argentina was abandoned as health officials and Police stormed the pitch at the Corinthians Arena, just minutes after kick-off.
The abandonment comes after the Brazilian health officials stated that some Argentinian players did not follow their quarantine rules.
Like in England, Brazil has a list of countries on a red list, if someone travels to or from a country on this list, then they must quarantine.
One of the countries on Brazil’s red list, is England, meaning that if a player has been in England in the last 14 days, then they must quarantine, which four Argentinian players failed to do.
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
Those players include Aston Villa’s Emiliano Martinez and Emiliano Buendia, and Tottenham Hotspur’s Christian Romero and Giovanni Lo Celso. Three of the players started the game in Brazil.
The game had kicked off as normal before the pitch was stormed by officials and Police, as they attempted to remove the Argentinian players. Within minutes the game was abandoned as it was clear the officials would not budge.
The intervention now throws Argentina’s next qualifier against Bolivia on Friday, into doubt, with the immediate future of the Premier League players unknown.
Alongside this, no date was set for a rearranged game against Brazil at this point.
BBC’s South American Football expert labelled the game ‘Farcical’:
What a farcical way to mark one of the great games in world football.
The game kicked off and we were five minutes in, and on wander onto the field a number of health officials and at that point it became obvious we were not going to have a game today.
Argentina, who have another game on Thursday against Bolivia, have high-tailed it to the airport without playing the game. ( BBC Sport)
It is now unclear whether the Premier League players will play a game for their international sides before returning to quarantine in England.
FIFA has opened an investigation to understand how these players were allowed into Brazil and how this breach of regulations was allowed to happen.