Argentina to appeal FIFA’s fixture replay decision

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Argentina to appeal FIFA's fixture replay decision

The Argentine Football Association (AFA) announced its decision to appeal what it says is FIFA forcing Brazil and Argentina into replaying their World Cup qualifier.

The scheduled match between the two teams last year ended after just five minutes due to an alleged breach of COVID-19 quarantine rules by Argentine players.

Argentina is now taking its appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

“We believe the decision to be unfair and we believe that Argentina did not cause the game to be canceled,” Andres Urich, an advisor to the association, said on Argentine television.

“We think we are in the right and we believe we have to take it to the Court.”

Earlier in the day, Argentine media published a letter from FIFA that ordered the two teams to make up for their abandoned game on Sept. 22 this year.

The original match was called off in September 2021 when Brazilian health officials accused four players from Argentina of misleading officials about their COVID-19 status.

The officials said the Argentines had breached rules stating travelers who had been in the UK, South Africa, or India during the previous two weeks were forbidden from entering Brazil unless they were citizens or had permanent residency.

The players had misled border officials by declaring they had not been in a red list country during the 14 days before the game, the Brazilian officials said.

Argentine officials said they believed the same protocols used in the Copa America in Brazil in June last year were in place for the World Cup qualifiers to allow teams to travel across the continent.

The South American Football Confederation confirmed that interpretation of the law.

FIFA, however, suspended the four players for two matches and said they wanted the game to be played again.

Argentina appealed that decision two months ago but said it had not received a resolution and called FIFA’s decision hasty.

The result of the match between the footballing giants is irrelevant to World Cup qualification as both teams have already secured their places in Qatar.

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