Liverpool will lose their Brazil stars against Leeds United after a battle with FIFA, according to reports. The Reds will have to make do.
This comes from The Times. They say that Brazil will likely win their battle over international call-ups after FIFA got involved.
Brazil is on the United Kingdom’s ‘Red list’ for Covid-19. That means people entering the UK from there is deemed ‘high-risk’. The result is a period of quarantine upon entering the country.
That’s a problem for football clubs. Their players return from Brazil (and other countries on the list) and immediately enter quarantine, ruling them out of the next weekend’s fixtures.
For Liverpool, that’s away at Leeds United. The Reds tried to get around this problem, however, by writing a letter to the Brazilian football federation explaining that they wouldn’t release their players.
Brazil didn’t accept that, per UOL. Instead, they contacted FIFA and asked for help.
Meanwhile, the Premier League held a meeting over the situation. All clubs ‘reluctantly but unanimously’ decided to share Liverpool’s position.
FIFA then wrote to Boris Johnson, asking for special rules over international footballers. This was denied. Brazil, though, didn’t give up.
The Times says they’ll ask FIFA invoke a last-resort ‘five-day rule’. It’s a rule that bans players from competing for clubs in FIFA competitions. This effectively tells clubs that they might as well release the players anyway.
Brazil to win FIFA battle
Liverpool will almost certainly be without Alisson, Fabinho and Roberto Firmino for their game at Leeds, then. Though, the latter’s injury actually now offers some hope.
If Firmino isn’t fit enough to play for Brazil, he’ll stay on Merseyside. That allows him time to recover and play at Elland Road. An odd silver lining, then.
But there’s no doubt that Liverpool will struggle here. This hasn’t gone their way and Jurgen Klopp will have to move things around to beat Leeds.