Brazil vs Argentina abandoned LIVE: Messi and co fly to Buenos Aires as health chiefs invade pitch to DEPORT Prem stars

BRAZIL'S World Cup qualifier against Argentina in Sao Paulo has been ABANDONED following astonishing scenes.

Health chiefs stormed onto the pitch after just five minutes of play to try and detain Argentina's four Premier League players – Emiliano Buendia, Emiliano Martinez, Giovani lo Celso and Cristian Romero – who had flown in from the UK on a private jet to play in the game.

Buendia and Martinez play for Aston Villa, while Lo Celso and Romero feature for Tottenham.

The Brazil health officials tried to detain the UK-based players because of a Covid-19 breach saying they had to quarantine.

Under Brazilian rules, visitors who have been in the UK in the 14 days before entering the country must quarantine for 14 days on arrival.

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Follow ALL of the latest developments below…

  • Joshua Mbu

    SCALONI SPEAKS

    Here's what Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni had to say: "At no time were we notified that they could not play the match. We wanted to play the match the Brazilian footballers too.

    "It should have been a party for everyone to enjoy the best players in the world.

    "I would like the people of Argentina to understand that as a coach, I have to defend my players.

    "It makes me very sad, I am not looking for a culprit. If something happened or did not happen, it was not the time to make that intervention."

  • Joshua Mbu

    TAPIA TALKS

    The President of the Argentine Football Association, Claudio Tapia has also spoken: "What happened today is unfortunate for football, it is a very bad image. 

    "Four people entered to interrupt the game to make a notification and CONMEBOL asked the players to go to the locker room.

    "You cannot talk about any lie here because there is health legislation under which all South American tournaments are played.

    "The health authorities of each country approved protocol that we have been fully complying with."

  • Joshua Mbu

    REVENGE

    Brazil were set to take on Argentina for the first time since the Copa America final defeat.

    But the health authorities had other ideas.

  • Joshua Mbu

    HOME TIME

    Argentina are on their way home after yesterday's covid mayhem.

  • Joshua Mbu

    ATTEMPT TO NOTIFY

    Their was an attempt to notify the players: "There was an attempt to notify the players, who refused to sign the notification delivered by the authorities present at the stadium for immediate return to their country of origin, based on Interministerial Ordinance 655/2021 and art.

    "11 of Law 6.437/1977. The terms were delivered to the Federal Police for appropriate action.

    "The framing of data omission irregularities in the completion of the Traveler's Health Declaration (DSV) and non-compliance with the quarantine subject each athlete who violated the legislation to the individual Health Violation Notice (AIS): Ordinance 655/2021, RDC 21/2008 and RDC 456/2021.

    "Health and Health Surveillance."

  • Joshua Mbu

    RED LIST

    The statement continued: "This Sunday morning (5/9), Anvisa notified the Federal Police and, until the start of the game, made an effort, with police support, to enforce the quarantine measure imposed on players, their immediate segregation and their driving to the airport precinct.

    "Attempts were frustrated, since the departure of the delegation from the hotel, and even for a considerable time before the start of the game, when the Agency had its actions postponed already in the premises of the Itaquera arena.

    "Anvisa's action, in short, was restricted to seeking compliance with Brazilian laws, which would be limited to the segregation of players and their respective fines.

    "The decision to interrupt the game was never, in this case, within the Agency's competence.

    "However, the selection of players who did not comply with Brazilian laws and the country's health regulations, and who still provided false information to the authorities, did indeed require the State Agency to act in a timely and manner, that is, in a timely and effective manner."

  • Joshua Mbu

    HEALTH AUTHORITIES

    The statement continued: "By virtue of this communication, still on Saturday afternoon (4/9), the aforementioned meeting took place involving the Ministry of Health, the State Health Department of São Paulo, representatives of Conmebol, CBF and the Argentine delegation.

    "During this meeting, Anvisa, together with the local health authority, determined the quarantine of players.

    "It should be clarified that the players entered Brazil at 8 am on Friday (3/9), providing false information.

    "On the same day, Anvisa identified that the information was false and, still on the night of 3/9, notified the Cievs, updating the health authorities (Ministry of Health and Health Department of São Paulo).

    "This Saturday (4/9), at 5 pm, a meeting was held with the institutions involved, in which the Agency and the São Paulo health authority informed the quarantine contingency.

    "However, even after the meeting and communication from the authorities, the players participated in Saturday night training."

  • Joshua Mbu

    WHAT'S BEEN SAID

    Here's what the health authorities have had to say on the matter: "Since this Saturday afternoon (4/9), Anvisa, in a meeting held with the participation of representatives of the South American Football Confederation (Conmebol), the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) and the Argentine delegation, recommended the quarantine of four Argentine players, upon confirmation that the players provided false information and unequivocally failed to comply with Interministerial Ordinance 655, of 2021, which establishes that foreign travelers who have passed, in the last 14 days, in the United Kingdom, South Africa, Northern Ireland and India are banned from entering Brazil.

    "This Sunday morning (5/9), the Agency called the Federal Police so that the measures within the scope of the police authority were taken immediately.

    "In the exercise of its legal mission, Anvisa has pursued, from the outset, compliance with Brazilian legislation, which, in this case, was restricted to the segregation of the four players involved and the adoption of the corresponding sanitary measures.

    "From the moment it became aware of the players' irregular situation, on the same day the delegation arrived, the Agency communicated the fact to the Brazilian health authorities, through Cievs, the Strategic Information Center on Health Surveillance."

  • sstreet

    MAD FOR IT

    Brazil vs Argentina isn't the first time South American football has succumbed to craziness with the world watching.

    In 2018, the Boca Juniors coach was attacked when they travelled to River Plate for the second leg of the Copa Libertadores final.

    After the match, Fifa President Gianni Infantino stepped in to move the game to Madrid.

    Though it is a completely different situation this time around, could we see another bidding war between world cities?

  • sstreet

    DOUBLE TROUBLE

    One facepalm simply wasn't enough as Lionel Messi and Neymar couldn't believe what they were seeing in Sao Paulo.

    The PSG duo will be sure to have a good laugh about it all when the dust settles and they're back in France next week.

  • sstreet

    IN THE FI-K OF IT

    Just as Uefa is not competent to deal with incidents of racism in Hungary during Fifa World Cup qualifiers, so Conmebol – South America's football association – cannot decide on where we go next with Brazil vs Argentina.

    Argentine FA President Claudio Tapia tweeted: "As president of the AFA I am very sorry for the suspension of what was supposed to be a party for South American football.

    "We have always been guided by the current health legislation in Conmebol.

    "We await the resolution of the disciplinary court of Fifa."

  • sstreet

    RUSH HOUR

    So many have asked why it took until seven minutes into the match for Brazil's health authorities to prevent it going ahead.

    Well, reports from Sao Paulo incredibly claim that agents of the authority were stuck in traffic…

  • sstreet

    TOP FLIGHT

    Argentina have returned to Buenos Aires, so there's no prospect of the game being replayed in this international break.

    A picture has been released of the players on the plane back from Sao Paulo.

    Emiliano Martinez's brother says the goalkeeper is set to fly to Croatia on Monday in order to avoid a hotel quarantine when he arrives in the UK ten days afterwards.

    That suggests that he and Buendia and Lo Celso and Romero are set to honour the agreements not to play against Bolivia on Thursday that they're reported to have with Aston Villa and Spurs respectively.

  • Marc Mayo

    GOOD MORNING

    As the Argentina head coach said last night, “It should have been a party” between Brazil and La Albiceleste in their 2022 Qatar World Cup Qualifying match.

    But not even five minutes had gone by before the party was crashed by some unexpected visitors known as the Brazilian public health officials.

    They raided the pitch in search for the four Argentinian players who had “failed to adhere to public health regulations” which caused the game to be abandoned.

    Emiliano Martinez, Emiliano Buendia (both Aston Villa), Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero (both Tottenham) were the four members of the Argentina team who did not follow protocols, according to the public health officials.

    It stems from United Kingdom being on Brazil’s red list which means any individual who enters Brazil from the UK is supposed to go straight into a 10-day isolation period.

    Some wires were crossed along the way because the clubs of the Premier League stars were given the green light to go and represent their countries.

    And both Lionel Scaloni and the president of the Argentine Football Association, Claudio Tapia were adamant that they stuck to the letter of the law when involving the four players in their squad.

    But when it was reported that nine Premier League stars were left out of the Brazil squad for the very same reason, it was always going to be an area of concern for Argentina.

    However, the one question which is on everyone in the industries lips is why didn’t the authorities intervene way before the game had kicked off?

    Hopefully we can bring you more updates throughout the course of the day.

  • Nyle Smith

    CATCHUP

    If you've just tuned in or have been hiding under a rock for the last couple of hours, Brazilian Public Health Officials raided the field to stop play only five minutes into the game.

    Their reasoning behind this was that four players in the Argentinian squad who play their club football in England, were not permitted to take part in the match due to Covid-19 protocols.

    United Kingdom is on Brazil's red list so therefore any individual who has been in the UK, travelling to Brazil has to quarantine for a 10-day period at minimum.

    The players who had breached Government guidelines were Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa) Emiliano Buendia (Aston Villa) Cristian Romero (Tottenham Hotspur) Giovanni Lo Celso (Tottenham Hotspur).

    However, the confusion is that the players were given the green light by their respected clubs so everyone is trying to figure out which wires got crossed and why did it happen during the game.

  • Nyle Smith

    DISCIPLINARY

    The referee and match commissioner has been ordered to submit a report to the FIFA Disciplinary Committee which will determine the steps to be followed.

    These procedures will strictly adhered to all the current regulations.

  • Nyle Smith

    UPDATE

    Argentinian officials have been filmed loading boxes of what looks to be the players individual cases of kits and boots into the back of a truck.

    Surely that means the game is completely off?

    Meanwhile, the Brazilian's are still having their inhouse training session match on the field.

  • Nyle Smith

    TAPIA TALKS

    The President of the Argentine Football Association, Claudio Tapia has now also spoken.

    What happened today is unfortunate for football, it is a very bad image.

    Four people entered to interrupt the game to make a notification and CONMEBOL asked the players to go to the locker room.

    You cannot talk about any lie here because there is health legislation under which all South American tournaments are played.

    The health authorities of each country approved protocol that we have been fully complying with

    Claudio Tapia@Argentina

  • Nyle Smith

    CONMEBOL CALLING

    CONMEBOL confirming that the game has been suspended but it is still unclear whether the game has been abandoned.

  • Nyle Smith

    BRAZIL 0-0 BRAZIL

    WHAT A SAVE!

    Brazil's training session is quite entertaining I must admit.

  • Nyle Smith

    TRAINING DAY

    Still no official confirmation that the game has been postponed but one thing for certain is that the Brazilian's are using this time to do a training drill.

    Yes, the Brazil national team are currently on the pitch having a training session.

  • Nyle Smith

    SUFFERING SCALONI

    The coach of Argentina has spoken.

    At no time were we notified that they could not play the match. We wanted to play the match the Brazilian footballers too.

    It should have been a party for everyone to enjoy the best players in the world. I would like the people of Argentina to understand that as a coach, I have to defend my players.

    It makes me very sad, I am not looking for a culprit. If something happened or did not happen, it was not the time to make that intervention.

    Lionel Scaloni@Argentina

  • Nyle Smith

    THIS GOT MESSI

    The moment Brazilian Public Health Officials storm the pitch to deport four Argentinian players who have been in the country since last week.

  • Nyle Smith

    UPDATE ALERT

    I must stress that this is unconfirmed but reports suggest that Brazil are about to conduct a training session because the Argentinian players are preparing to leave the stadium on a coach.

    Like I said, nothing has been confirmed but for all of us getting our hopes up that the game is going to continue, it's looking highly unlikely.

  • Nyle Smith

    POSITIVTE SIGNS

    The Brazilian national team have started warming up again as the talks between officials continue.

    Could the match resume?

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