Chaos in Sâo Paulo as Brazil-Argentina suspended, as it happened

Paul Reidy

COMMENT

Brazil-Argentina: WC 2022 qualifier

Here's brief summary of what happened tonight in Sao Paulo:

Anvisa, Brazil's health authority, said in a widely released statement shortly before Sunday's game: "Anvisa considers the situation a serious health risk and so has asked local health authorities to determine the immediate quarantine of the players, who are stopped from participating in any activity and should be prevented from remaining on Brazilian soil."

When the match began with the relevant Argentina players still included, health officials walked onto the pitch.

A melee broke out and the action was halted, with the entire Argentina team soon leaving the field.

Conversations continued, with the Brazil XI remaining on the pitch, while Argentina's Lionel Messi reappeared to speak with officials and his opponents.

There were few immediate updates from official sources, with both Brazil and Argentina reporting only that the game had been halted. The visiting side posted a further message to say it had been "suspended".

Head of AFA (Argentine FA, Chiqui Tapia)

Tapia: "What happened today presents a sad image for football. Four people entered the pitch to interrupt the game to make a point and Conmebol asked the players to go to the locker room."

The Argentina players are poised to board the team bus and make a swift exit from the country.

In case you're just joining us, here's brief summary of what happened tonight in Sao Paulo:

Anvisa, Brazil's health authority, said in a widely released statement shortly before Sunday's game: "Anvisa considers the situation a serious health risk and so has asked local health authorities to determine the immediate quarantine of the players, who are stopped from participating in any activity and should be prevented from remaining on Brazilian soil."

When the match began with the relevant Argentina players still included, health officials walked onto the pitch.

A melee broke out and the action was halted, with the entire Argentina team soon leaving the field.

Conversations continued, with the Brazil XI remaining on the pitch, while Argentina's Lionel Messi reappeared to speak with officials and his opponents.

There were few immediate updates from official sources, with both Brazil and Argentina reporting only that the game had been halted. The visiting side posted a further message to say it had been "suspended".

In case you missed it:

Brazil and Argentina was halted just minutes after kickoff on Sunday after Brazilian health officials objected to the participation of three Argentine players they say broke quarantine rules.

Argentina walked off the pitch at the Corinthians Arena after the officials entered the pitch to stop the game.

Conmebol confirm suspension of the game

Word now reaching us that the Brazilian health officials suspect that the documentation relating to the four UK based players has been falsified

Some 45 minutes later after the game was held up, not a word from Conmebol on the situation.

Argentina to return to the pitch? The Brazil squad are stripped and look ready to play ....

Images here in Sâo Paulo that do no favour for South American football ...

Crazy, crazy (and totally unnecessary) scenes here in Brazil....

Brazil team now holding an improvised meeting and it would appear having the situation explained to them

There is now a 'rumour' that the game may indeed be played but we are waiting for a definitive line from Conmebol

The major question has to be why this decision was taken five minutes into the game ....

Brazil players remain on the pitch and confusion still abundant with the question marks now emerging as what will no happen? Will the game be replayed? Match awarded to Brazil. There is even suggestions that the four x Argentine players may be deported from Brazil.

Argentina FA confirm that, indeed the game is suspended

Word from Conmebol is that the game is indeed to be suspended....

Messi is back on the pitch now talking to Neymar and word from Argentina is that the game is suspended... still awaiting for an official line on what the outcome will be.

Word from Ole is that Brazilian health officials refused to let the game continues with the four UK based players on the pitch and Argentina said, if they go, we all go !

Brazil are still on the pitch with the entire Argentina team and match officials are in the dressing room. Confusion still the key factor here with no announcements from the Brazilian FA/Conmebol.

The problem sees to focus on the UK based players with English Premier League clubs: Emiliano Buendia and Emiliano Martinez of Aston Villa and Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero of Tottenham Hotspur and covid regulations relating to UK based players but resolving this after five minutes of the game is far from ideal.

Mystery as why this was not resolved ahead of the game.

The match officials too have left the pitch with just the Brazil players remaining on the Sâo Paulo pitch

Confirmed that the official looking individuals, indeed are from the Brazilian Health board.

Not a great looks for Conmebol here as players leave the pitch with discussions ongoing.

Conmebol officials, plain clothes police and sanitary officials all on the pitch at this point and it appears that the Argentina players are now leaving the pitch.

Confusion here in Sâo Paulo with official looking individuals now on the pitch with the game held up. This may have something to do with the UK based Argentina players and local Brazilian protocols relating to covid.... that is the early speculation but there is a massive degree of confusion here at the Corinthians Arena,

Neymar skips by a challenge and then lashes out at the Argentine player who he felt fouled him. Temper levels already on the increase with a series of what looks like plain clothes police on the sidelines. This may have something to do with the Argentina players and something is up !

Plenty of work ahead for our match official tonight no doubt.

4

Acuña blocks Danilo and the Venezuelan referee sounds his whistle as Neymar and Romero face up to one another after the Argentina player clips Militao.

3

Both sides easing their way into the action with the surface at the Corinthians Arena looking excellent.

All set in Sâo Paulo with Argentina set to get the game underway

braarg

If your just joining us, a reminder of the starting XI's as Brazil-Argentina is moments away from kick-off

Footballers really don't make great singers !!!

The sides take to the pitch. An empty Corinthians Arena with a scattering of special guests as the national anthems are aired...

group

Here's how the Conmebol WC qualifying group looks ahead of Sunday's games. The top four sides head straight to Qatar with the fifth placed team heading to a one-off play-off.

The teams are in the tunnel and poised to take to the pitch...Brazil in their iconic yellow/blue and white with Argentine too in their classic sky blue and white stripes and black shorts/socks tonight.

arg

The Argentina players warm-up at the Corinthians Arena as kick-off looms

The Corinthians Arena looking good tonight and despite initial hopes to permit a reduced number of fans to attend, the stands will be virtually empty for this 'SuperClasico de las Americas' given Brazil's ongoing battle with covid.

...and finally, the official Argentine national team Twitter account confirms the Albiceleste starting XI

temp

Sâo Paulo weather tonight

It's a warm September afternoon in the Brazilian city with a current temperature of 85F/29C with no rain forcast this evening.

Well done to Ole with their predicted Argentina XI in fact the 11 players that will start in Sâo Paulo.

ole

As we await the official confirmation of the Argentine side, this is the projected XI according to local Buenos Aires based outlet Ole

ref

Venezuela's Jesús Valenzuela is tonight's match official for the game in Sâo Paulo.

Four Argentine players told to isolate, hours before Brazil game

Brazil's health regulator Anvisa sought the immediate isolation of four Argentine footballers on Sunday, hours before the Copa America champions were due to face Brazil in a World Cup qualifier in Sao Paulo.

Anvisa said the players should have quarantined on arrival because they had spent time in the United Kingdom over the previous 14 days.

Although it did not name the four, the players with English Premier League clubs are Emiliano Buendia and Emiliano Martinez of Aston Villa and Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero of Tottenham Hotspur.

Team news: First up the Brazil XI

as do Argentina

Brazil arrive at the Corinthians Arena

Global ko times for tonight's Brazil-Argentina clash

 

Gabigol

Gagibol: "Brazil not out for Copa America revenge against Argentina"

Brazil do not see Sunday’s World Cup qualifier against Argentina as potential revenge for their defeat in the Copa America final two months ago, striker Gabriel Barbosa.

Argentina beat Brazil 1-0 in Rio de Janeiro in July to win their first major title since 1993.

But the day before the two sides meet again at Corinthians’ ground in Sao Paulo, Barbosa dampened talk of revenge and said that defeat was in the past.

“This is the qualifiers, we're doing well, we’re coming off the back of another win. Obviously we're sad about the loss in the Copa America but this is a new moment,” the Flamengo forward told reporters.

“We need to play well, enjoy ourselves and deserve the win.”

Argentina are unbeaten in 21 games but Brazil are runaway leader of the South American qualifying group.

Brazilian health officials accused four Argentine footballers of breaking quarantine rules on Saturday and began an investigation that could lead to their exclusion from this weekend's World Cup qualifier between the two sides.

The Argentina squad flew into Brazil on Friday, the day after beating Venezuela 3-1 in a World Cup qualifier in Caracas.

The squad for Sunday's game at the Corinthians arena contains four players who play in England, Emiliano Buendia and Emiliano Martinez of Aston Villa and Tottenham Hotspur duo Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero.

Anvisa said that with few exemptions non-Brazilians were prohibited from entering Brazil from Britain, Northern Ireland, South Africa or India.

Everton

Brazil are in a confident mood after winning all seven of their first games in World Cup qualifying for the first time. The five-times world champions have 21 points, six more than Argentina in second place.

"Seven wins in a row is historic, we'll now hope to make it eight," said Everton Ribeiro, who scored Brazil's winner in their 1-0 victory over Chile in Santiago.

Goalkeeper Weverton said they were well aware of Argentina's quality. “It will be hard fought game and so now we are going to rest to recuperate and get ready," he added. "(Coach) Tite is going to prepare us well, it is a derby and a really difficult game and we hope to win one more, that’s our aim.”

The game kicks off at the Corinthians Arena at 21:00 CEST/15:00 ET

Hello and a very warm welcome to our coverage of tonight's big CONMEBOL World Cup qualifier as Brazil face Argentina in Sâo Paulo.

 .