The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) ruled out postponing the match for the Brasileirao between Palmeiras and Flamengo, scheduled for Sunday in Sao Paulo, after an outbreak of covid-19 that affects the coach and at least 16 Mengao players.
“We understand the reasons and grounds for the claim to postpone the match (…), but unfortunately we inform that it will not be possible to attend the match,” Manoel Flores, CBF Director of Competitions, said in a letter.
“The club has enough staff to carry out the game. We emphasize that other cases similar to this were also rejected,” he added.
Flores responded in this way to the postponement request made by the popular Rio de Janeiro club after reporting about thirty infected at the end, on Tuesday, of the two-game mini-tour in Ecuador for the Copa Libertadores.
“We found it absurd (the decision), there were many people” infected, the president of Mengao, Rodolfo Landim, told SporTV.
In addition to the Spanish coach Domènec Torrent and the group of footballers, the doctor, managers, members of the coaching staff and officials are also contaminated, according to the general vice president of Fla, Rodrigo Dunshee.
The CBF denied the request because it considered that the current champion of the Brazilian league and the Libertadores has enough athletes to face the duel, after it was allowed to expand the number of registered to 40, anticipating infections due to the pandemic.
So far Flamengo has registered 34 players and has the possibility of adding another six, according to the entity.
Dunshee said Thursday that the Fla has only nine professional footballers at its disposal, following infections and injuries. To fill out the payroll they will have to appeal to juveniles, he said.
Among those contaminated are Diego Ribas, Filipe Luis and Chilean Mauricio Isla. Also Rodrigo Caio and Everton Ribeiro, summoned by Tite for the games against Bolivia and Peru, on October 9 and 13, which will start the South American qualifier for the World Cup. Qatar-2022.
Flamengo has been one of the Brazilian clubs most affected by the new coronavirus, which has hit Brazil hard, the second country with the most deaths in the world and the third with the most infections detected.
The Fla pushed for the resumption of the games, which were suspended in March and gradually returned in June, although without an audience. Since May, the ‘rubonegros’ have reported the contagion of more than fifty of their workers or relatives of them.
With ten games played, Flamengo is sixth in the Brasileirao with 17 points, one less than Palmeiras, who is fourth.