Soccer

5 things you may have missed as Brazil officials try to deport Argentina stars

Brazil vs Argentina was brought to a halt just minutes into the match after Brazilian health officials stormed onto the pitch to try and deport Argentina players.

The outrageously bold move came hours after the same officials called for four of Argentina's key stars to leave the country after failing to adhere to their health guidelines regarding Covid-19 quarantine.

The quartet are believed to be Premier League stars Emiliano Buendia and Emiliano Martinez of Aston Villa and Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero of Tottenham.

Martinez, Le Celso and Romero have all been named in Argentina's starting line-up for the all-important match, with Buendia on the bench.

So what did you miss during the ridiculous pitch invasion?

The reason behind the pitch invasion

So what was this all about?

According to Brazilian travel rules, any foreign person who has passed through the United Kingdom, South Africa, Northern Ireland or India in the last 14 days, is prevented from entering Brazil.

Brazil's National Health Surveillance Agency says that "the four players in question declared that they have not passed through any of the four countries with restrictions in the last 14 days."

They add that the players arrived in Brazil by flight from Caracas, the capital of Venezuela, to Guarulhos, which is near Sao Paolo.

Once it was confirmed that the information they received was false, Brazilian health authority reportedly notified the federal police.

Officials let the game begin but then decided to storm the pitch soon after kick-off instead.

Messi left fuming

Lionel Messi was quick to urge his players to leave the pitch in the immediate aftermath of the incident.

Messi, stood alongside PSG team-mate and Brazil star Neymar, rounded up his players and took them off the field.

Reports suggest the Argentinian captain said: "We’ve been here for three days, why are you doing this just now?!"

Otamendi clash

The ugly scenes began as one lone Brazilian health official wandered onto the pitch holding a piece of paper.

The first Argentinian to interact with him was former Manchester City star Nicolas Otamendi.

Otamendi and the official got into a minor scuffle, with the defender attempting to remove the Brazilian from the pitch.

Soon after, all hell broke loose and the game was suspended.

CONMEBOL'S Brazil threat

CONMEBOL are understood to have told Brazil that if they didn’t allow the Premier-League based players play, they will face a points deduction.

That is why the game initially took place, despite the authorities taking issue with the quartet of Premier League players.

The two countries occupy the top two spots in South American qualifying for the 2022 World Cup with Brazil winning all their games so far.

Argentina are hoping to cut the gap to their rivals to just two points in tonight's match at Sao Paolo.

Messi and Alves reunite

Social media footage soon emerged of Messi and his former Barcelona pal Dani Alves having a chat in the tunnel.

Messi had removed his Argentina shirt and was wearing a training vest.

Alves had his arm draped around his former team-mate as the pair discussed the crazy scenes unfolding.

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