It seems as though Aston Villa and Tottenham quartet – Emiliano Martinez, Giovani Lo Celso, Cristian Romero and Emiliano Buendia – caused quite the stir in Brazil overnight.
Argentina’s World Cup qualifier against Brazil in Sao Paulo was suspended after authorities accused the above players of breaking COVID rules.
Given that the Premier League-based players had been in Brazil for three days, and the game had already kicked off, then it left a certain Lionel Messi annoyed at how things were handled last night.
The PSG superstar questioned why the game was stopped after five minutes because the Argentina players had been ‘at the stadium for an hour’, as quoted by ESPN.
“Why did they start the game and stop it after five minutes?” asked Messi.
“We have been here at the stadium for an hour, they could have told us.”
Villa’s number one goalkeeper, Martinez, and Tottenham duo, Lo Celso and Romero started the game.
The fourth Premier League player – Buendia – wasn’t named in the squad, but BBC Sport have reported that the health authorises expected them all to quarantine upon their arrival into the country.
It has been suggested that they broke the rules, hence the mayhem minutes into the game being started.
Brazil is red-listed by the UK because of the COVID pandemic and the UK is also red-listed by the South American country.
Under Brazilian rules, those entering their shores, who have been in the UK for 14 days – which applies to the above players – must quarantine for 14 days.
And it seems as though that didn’t happen!
Nonetheless, all of this is a complete and utter mess and it’s probably something that is out of FIFA’s hands.
But it’s pretty obvious that they have to get a grip on this situation because it seems to be an issue between two nations that might now also see Aston Villa and Spurs get involved.