Argentine representatives from the squads of both Tottenham Hotspur and Aston Villa have today departed for international duty, it has been confirmed.
Fresh Covid chaos
Much controversy has of course surrounded the upcoming international break.
This comes with tensions having been sparked between the nations set to take part, and the clubs with whom their stars ply their trade.
Amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, a host of countries are yet to bring the spread of the virus under control. This, in turn, leaves such states on the ‘red list’ for travel for a host of other nations across the globe.
In the United Kingdom, for example, Brazil is one such country currently red-listed.
This status has resulted in inevitable problems for the Selecao’s national team, with boss Tite having no doubt intended to call up a host of Premier League-based players for the upcoming round of World Cup qualifiers.
If the likes of Roberto Firmino, Gabriel Jesus and Thiago Silva were indeed selected for international duty, then, upon their return to the UK, an enforced 10-day period of hotel quarantine would be required.
Of course, this would rule such players out of a minimum of one round of Premier League fixtures.
It was therefore decided earlier this week that, should clubs from the English top-flight so choose, they would have the power to block players from departing for international duty in ‘red list’ countries.
Premier League clubs have today reluctantly but unanimously decided not to release players for international matches played in red-list countries next month
Full statement: https://t.co/JBl6FuzUNC pic.twitter.com/EJiZaODub1
— Premier League (@premierleague) August 24, 2021
Spurs & Villa take a hit
On Sunday, though, four Premier League stars have nevertheless jetted off for such a nation.
First, Aston Villa released an official statement, confirming that both Emiliano Martinez and Emiliano Buendia have departed to link up with the Argentina squad.
The goalkeeper and midfielder alike have agreed to take part in the Albiceleste’s first two World Cup qualifiers, versus Venezuela and Brazil.
Both Villans, though, will then depart the country’s camp early, missing a third and final outing versus Bolivia, to ensure that their absence at club level is minimised upon returning to England.
A standard 10-day red-list quarantine will ensue as part of the UK’s Covid-19 regulations, but Martinez and Buendia will only be forced to sit out a solitary fixture as a result.
This comes in the form of a Premier League meeting with Chelsea on September 11th.
Aston Villa can confirm Emi Martínez and Emi Buendía have travelled to join up with the Argentina squad with the permission of the club in accordance with FIFA’s international match call-up rules.
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) August 29, 2021
Joining the two Villa stars, meanwhile, will be a further pair of Argentine Premier League representatives, from Tottenham.
In a post across social media this evening, Spurs duo Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso can be seen preparing for take-off on a flight, alongside Martinez and Buendia.
In turn, with Nuno Espirito Santo, after overseeing a 1-o win over Watford on Sunday, having confirmed the Lilywhites’ intention to minimise the impact of the upcoming hotel quarantine facing his stars, it can be assumed that Romero and Lo Celso will also make themselves available for two of Argentina’s upcoming fixtures, before departing ahead of the 3rd.
Both, in this case, would too miss a solitary Premier League outing, versus Crystal Palace.
#thfc pair Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso leaving for international duty with Argentina. pic.twitter.com/WDmPAJ6nzl
— Hotspur Related (@HotspurRelated) August 29, 2021
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