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Spurs & Aston Villa stars to start for Argentina despite being ‘ordered to leave Brazil’

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Spurs & Aston Villa stars to start for Argentina despite being ‘ordered to leave Brazil’

 

An incredible story surrounding the upcoming showdown between Brazil and Argentina has come to the fore just hours prior to kick-off.

Sao Paulo showdown

South America’s two biggest footballing nations are due to renew rivalries at 8pm UK time on Sunday.

The clash comes amid the respective countries’ qualifying campaigns for next year’s World Cup in Qatar.

As things stand, unsurprisingly, it is Brazil who sit top of the table, having racked up a perfect seven wins from seven thus far.

Argentina, meanwhile, sit 2nd, no doubt hopeful of closing the gap on the Selecao to three points after stuttering to draws in three of their own seven qualifiers.

And adding further spice to the occasion is the fact that, less than two months ago, Argentina and Brazil faced off in the finale of the Copa America, with the former having eventually emerged triumphant on the back of a dogged affair.

Spurs & Aston Villa stars to start for Argentina despite being ‘ordered to leave Brazil’

BELO HORIZONTE, BRAZIL – NOVEMBER 10: Neymar (R) of Brazil greets Lionel Messi of Argentina during a match between Brazil and Argentina as part of 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Qualifier at Mineirao stadium on November 10, 2016 in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

Covid chaos

It just wouldn’t be a CONMEBOL weekend without some form of drama emerging in the buildup to the most high-profile fixture of the break, though.

Just hours ahead of kick-off this evening, incredibly, word was forthcoming that a quartet of key Argentine stars – in the form of Emiliano Martinez, Emiliano Buendia, Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso – were looking altogether unlikely to feature.

This came after all four were ordered to depart Brazilian soil, having been accused of providing false information regarding their recent whereabouts upon entry into the country.

Due to its presence on Brazil’s red list for travel, any individual to have spent time in the United Kingdom within 14 days of their arrival in the nation are currently expected to undergo an enforced period of self isolation.

Buendia and Martinez of Aston Villa, and Romero and Lo Celso of Tottenham, however, are said to have lied about having been present in the UK as recently as this week.

In turn, a short time ago, it was widely claimed that all four would be unavailable for selection to Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni on Sunday:

Subsequent reports, however, have since assured that this will in fact not prove to be the case.

Amid outside pressure on the part of CONMEBOL, Brazil have essentially been left with no choice but to proceed with this evening’s clash as planned, with the alternative a potential points reduction:

At least three of the quartet in question, meanwhile, are expected to start at the Corinthians Arena.

 

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Aminat Aigbe

Aminat Aigbe is the first lady of afronaija and a very good blogger ( Original Mrs AfroNaija )

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