PL club chief fires warning after Spurs and Aston Villa’s Argentina troubles

Joe Lewis Daniel Levy
Marc Atkins/Mark Leech/Getty Images

Aston Villa chief executive, Christian Purslow has admitted that Premier League clubs will now be wary of releasing their players for international duty after the debacle on Sunday during the match between Brazil and Argentina.

Despite the Premier League ruling that clubs do not have to release their players travelling to ‘red list’ countries for international duty, Tottenham pair, Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero, and Villa duo, Emiliano Buendia and Emiliano Martinez, flew to South America to join up with the Argentina squad.

All hell broke loose during Argentina’s clash against Brazil on Sunday as the match was suspended soon after kickoff when health officials from Brazil accused the four Argentine Premier League players of breaking Covid quarantine rules and falsifying documents to enter the country.

The four players have since been released by Argentina and, according to reports, Tottenham are set to fine Lo Celso, Romero, and Davinson Sanchez (who joined up with the Colombia squad) on their return to the UK.

Purslow believes the debacle that unfolded over the weekend will make clubs think twice about releasing players for international duty in the midst of the pandemic.

The Villa chief told The Sun: “What happened in Brazil on Sunday was one of the most extraordinary things I’ve seen watching football in all my life.

“I don’t quite understand how it happened but it was very regrettable and very very damaging to sport when we had done everything we could to enable our players to play in very important games.

“It would make any reasonable club executive feel incredibly nervous about releasing players for overseas travel while we are in the midst of this crisis.”

The Sun also asked Daniel Levy about the events on Sunday, with the Spurs chairman simply responding: “It’s not good news, is it?”.

Spurs Web Opinion

I cannot see Premier League clubs releasing their South American stars for next month’s international break given how poorly CONMEBOL, FIFA and the South American governments have managed this situation.

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