FIFA open 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.
A few spectators suffered cuts and bruises when police used batons to break up the brawl.
The authority that oversees international football released a statement saying, “FIFA can confirm that its Disciplinary Committee has opened proceedings against the Brazilian Football Association (CBF) and the Argentinian Football Association (AFA).”
Due to “potential breaches of article 17” of FIFA’s disciplinary rule, which governs security and order at games, Brazil will be sanctioned.
Argentina, who caused the first-ever home loss for the Brazilians in a World Cup qualification match, will be sanctioned for the “delayed kick off” and “crowd disturbance”.
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.