FIFA Fines Brazil, Argentina, Orders Replay of Abandoned Match

FIFA handed out fines and suspensions on Monday while ordering Brazil and Argentina to replay the World Cup qualifier that was abandoned after health agents stormed the field in Sao Paulo to dispute the quarantine status of players.

Four of Argentina’s English Premier League players were accused of falsifying Brazilian coronavirus declarations in September by not stating they had been in red-listed Britain in the previous 14 days, leading to the game being stopped after seven minutes.

Emiliano Buendía, Emiliano Martínez, Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero will serve two-match bans in FIFA fixtures after “not complying with the FIFA Return to Football International Match Protocol,” the world governing body said in a disciplinary ruling.

FIFA ordered the Brazilian Football Association to pay a fine of 550,000 Swiss francs (about $600,000) for “infringements related to order and security,” and over the abandonment.

The Argentinian Football Association was fined 250,000 Swiss francs ($270,000) for failing to “comply with its obligations in relation to order and security, the preparation of and its participation in the match”, and the abandonment.

AFA President Chiqui Tapia tweeted that the Argentines planned to appeal the ruling.

Brazil’s soccer confederation said in a statement it disagrees with the decision, questions FIFA about its foundations and will later decide whether to take action on the case.

FIFA has not set a date or location for the game to be played again. Brazil and Argentina have already sealed a place at the World Cup in Qatar in November ahead of the scheduled conclusion of CONMEBOL qualifying in March, when both teams have another two games to play.

Brazil leads the 10-team round-robin competition with 39 points, four more than Argentina.

The Brazil-Argentina game could take place with domestic-based players, rather than those at clubs in Europe, to stage it outside of the usual window for internationals.

The original game was tied at 0-0 when it was stopped.

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