Responsible at Anvisa (National Health Surveillance Agency) for the supervision of ports, airports and borders, director Alex Machado Campos tells the Panel that the AFA (Argentine Football Association) failed to comply with repeated warnings and determinations from the Brazilian authorities before the interruption of the match between the Argentine and Brazilian teams this Sunday (5), in São Paulo.
Campos, who heads the process at Anvisa, recounts at least three attempts to get the AFA to separate the four players who had passed through the United Kingdom before arriving in Brazil and who provided false information about it.
The first would have happened on Saturday (4), at a meeting that was attended by representatives of Anvisa, the São Paulo Secretariat of Health, the Ministry of Health and the AFA, says Campos.
Anvisa confirmed at the meeting that, unlike what was stated in the official forms filled out by the athletes, they had passed through the United Kingdom.
Players Emiliano Martínez, Emiliano Buendia, Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero play in Premier League clubs. They could only have entered the country for the Qualifiers game after 14 days away from the restricted venues.
In view of this, Anvisa determined that they should be quarantined and not participate in training activities. The AFA ignored it and put the athletes to train later.
“There is a technical report of this meeting, in which they were officially notified. They had to be segregated”, completes the director.
Campos says that Anvisa, then, notified the PF that there were sanitary infractions taking place by the Argentine national team. This Sunday morning (5), federal police went to the hotel where the Argentine delegation was, which placed the athletes on the bus and left for the stadium.
Agents from Anvisa and PF were then transferred to the Neo Química Arena, and arrived there 1 hour before the game. Campos reports that the AFA did not allow access to the changing rooms.
“Our performance had nothing to do with the game. Anvisa played in several stages and it’s not the interruption’s fault. The teams could play. [argentinos] faced Anvisa to take the guys onto the field. The final mockery was to enter the field,” says Campos.
“The game wasn’t supposed to be stopped. But it was offense after offense. We asked them not to leave the hotel, to have them quarantined, and in the end they took them [os quatro jogadores] the field. Either we have rules in Brazil or we don’t,” completes the director.
Campos speaks of a “sequence of non-compliance with Brazilian norms and repeated collisions with Anvisa’s determinations.”
“We didn’t want the game to stop, we just wanted the four players to pay for the offense they committed,” adds the director.
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