Argentina confirm Copa America participation in Brazil following change in tournament hosts

Lionel Messi, ArgentinaGetty

Argentina have confirmed their participation in the Copa America amid controversy over the tournament's late relocation to Brazil.

Previously planned to be co-hosted by Argentina and Colombia, the competition was moved from the South American nations because of rising Covid cases and political unrest, respectively.

Brazil, however, has its own Covid problems, which has led members of the Selecao to speak out against hosting the football event on short notice. But it now appears Argentina players are unwilling to join their on-field rivals in protesting CONMEBOL's decision.

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What has been said?

"The Argentine National Team confirms its participation in the Copa America 2021, as reflected by its sporting spirit throughout its history," wrote the AFA in a statement

"With a huge effort from the Argentine Football Association, which placed at everyone’s disposal all the necessary tools available to guarantee each of the specific care requested in this difficult time we are going through, the National Team will travel to Brazil to play the continental tournament.

"All the staff of the Albiceleste team will work together to overcome this adversity that, unfortunately, affects all South Americans equally."

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There is potential drama yet to unfold that could rattle Copa America plans, as the Selecao have said they will communicate their official stance on the tournament after facing Paraguay in World Cup qualifying on Tuesday. Given their reservations about the tournament, it's reportedly possible that some of their players could refuse to play.

But not having Argentina behind them would be a blow for Brazilian players if they do intend to stage a boycott, and the AFA statement takes the competition one step closer to actually happening this month despite all of the drama.

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