Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea are among the hardest hit after 10 Premier League stars from South America were banned from playing this weekend – despite them skipping the international break to stay in England.
The Brazilian FA are leading the South American nations taking revenge for clubs blocking their players from travelling to ‘red-list’ countries, by imposing a ‘five-day restriction’ on the players they called up, even though they did not fly.
The news means Liverpool are set to be without Brazilian trio Alisson, Fabinho and Roberto Firmino for their clash at Leeds on Sunday, while Raphinha will be missing for the home side.
Elsewhere, Fred will be sidelined for Manchester United for both the home game against Newcastle, and the opening Champions League game at Young Boys on Tuesday night.
Champions Manchester City will be missing two Brazilians in Ederson and Gabriel Jesus at Leicester on Saturday, while Chelsea too are affected with the news that Thiago Silva will have to sit out both Aston Villa and Zenit St Petersburg.
The rule is a FIFA regulation agreed by the 211 member nations, in which a five-day playing restriction is automatically applied if a national association requests it.
The five days begins the day after the final match of the international break, so in Brazil’s case this time around the blocked-out period runs from September 10-14, rendering players unavailable until midnight on Tuesday.
Mexico, Chile and Paraguay are among the other South American countries to have applied the same rule, meaning that Wolves striker Raul Jimenez and Newcastle’s Miguel Almiron are also ineligible for this weekend’s Premier League action.
Everton’s Richarlison, though, has seemingly been told he CAN play, after his name was omitted from the list due to a ‘good relationship’ with the Brazilian FA.
This news is likely to spark further fury from English clubs on a week which has already seen farcical scenes during the Brazil-Argentina World Cup qualifier.
The match was halted after just six minutes when health officials stormed the pitch in a bid to detain Spurs’ Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso, and Aston Villa’s Emiliano Martinez and Emiliano Buendia, over alleged Covid quarantine breaches.
All of those players are also set to be unavailable this weekend, meaning a whole host of South American stars will be out in disastrous scenes for a host of top clubs.