FIFA opens disciplinary proceedings after Brazil-Argentina brawl

FIFA said on Friday that the football federations of Argentina and Brazil have been subject to disciplinary action after a brawl postponed the start of a 2026 World Cup qualifying match.

World champions Argentina won 1-0 on Tuesday at Rio de Janeiro’s Maracana stadium, but the play was delayed for almost 30 minutes due to fights between opposing fan bases that broke out prior to the game.

As players made fruitless attempts to persuade spectators to cease fighting, the famed stadium collapsed into mayhem. Lionel Messi, the captain of Argentina, led his team back to the locker room, but he didn’t come out until the violence had subsided.

Police fought back the melee with batons, leaving some fans with bloodied faces and other injuries.

“FIFA can confirm that its Disciplinary Committee has opened proceedings against the Brazilian Football Association (CBF) and the Argentinian Football Association (AFA),” world football’s governing body said in a statement.

Brazil face sanctions for “potential breaches of article 17” of FIFA’s disciplinary code, which regulates order and security at matches.

Argentina, who inflicted the Brazilians’ first ever home defeat in qualifying for a World Cup, face sanctions for the “crowd disturbance” and “delayed kick off”.

The two teams face the two most frequent penalties: fines and international home games with their stadium partially or completely closed.

With 15 points from six games, Argentina leads the South American World Cup qualifying rankings.

Meanwhile, Brazil’s third loss in the qualifying round drops the five-time world champions to sixth place after six games played with seven points.

This article has been posted by a News Hour Correspondent. For queries, please contact through [email protected]
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