"Not the Best Place": Argentina, Chile Team Coaches Worry Over Brazil Hosting Copa America 2021
Football coaches for Argentina and Chile are worried over the decision of Brazil to host the Copa America 2021.
Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni said that if they have to go and play, they will try to make the Copa the best it can be. Scaloni added that there are, however, a lot of uncertainties about the accommodation, noting that it is alarming and worrying, Yahoo Sports reports.
The football coach noted that Brazil is not the best place for the game.
Argentina was due to host the Copa, alongside Colombia. However, last month, both countries were stripped of the right by South American football's governing body CONMEBOL. Less than two weeks before the tournament starts, Brazil was announced as the new host for Copa America 2021.
Meanwhile, Chile's Uruguayan coach Martin Lasarte said that it seems like a huge risk for him as health comes first for him.
South America is currently one of the most affected regions in the world by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Brazil is next to the United States with more than 465,000 deaths, and 16.5 million infections, placing the country as the third highest in the world.
Meanwhile, Argentina has recorded 78,000 deaths and 3.8 million cases, with its population over a fifth of the size of Brazil's.
Copa America 2021 in Brazil
Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro emphasezed that he, all the ministers, including the health minister, have decided to push through with the hosting of Copa America 2021.
Bolsonaro added that he regrets the lives lost to the pandemic, but he also said that "we have to live," according to a BBC News report.
The Supreme Court has given Bolsonaro five days to submit information on the government's decision to host the tournament despite opposition from the Workers' Party.
Bolsonaro has announced that four states will host the matches but fans will not be able to attend the games. Rio de Janeiro is among the states to host the games.
Brazil won Copa America in 2019 when the country hosted the tournament. This year's games brought in $118 million, which marks CONMEBOL's second-biggest annual source of revenue, according to a Washington Post report.
Argentina President Alberto Fernández had offered to stage the entire tournament in the country after CONMEBOL decided to remove Colombia due to escalating cases, deaths, and police violence.
Some Argentine players have contacted colleagues from competing national teams to call for a collective effort to stop the tournament from taking place.
Argentine star Sergio Aguero said that the players want to play. However, the issue is to find a good place to play. Goalkeeper Franco Armani and full-back Gonzalo Montiel did not travel to the game after having contracted the coronavirus.
Meanwhile, Chilean midfielder Arturo Vidal did not go to Argentina as he is receiving treatment for COVID in a Chilean hospital.
The tournament is scheduled for matches from June 13 to July 10. Copa America 2021 would have been the first tournament hosted by two countries.
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