Organizers of Copa America, South America’s biggest football tournament, said on Sunday that it would no longer be in Argentina, which has been caught in the worst coronavirus boom ever.
It is not clear where the 10-nation tournament starting June 13 will take place now. South American Football Federation, Conmebol, Which hosts the event, said it would consider proposals to move it to other countries that had expressed interest.
The Argentine government and the public have broken down on the prudence of hosting this month-long tournament, which is reflected in a discussion Tokyo to be held in Japan for Olympics this summer. On Friday, officials in Japan, which are registering more than 4,000 cases a day amid the fourth wave of infection, Emergency situation has increased in Tokyo And eight other prefectures until at least June 20, exactly one month before the opening ceremony.
Last week, Argentina’s President Alberto Fernandez announced stringent lockdown measures by the end of the month, calling it his country’s “worst moment in the pandemic”. Argentina now ranks third in the world after neighboring countries Paraguay and Uruguay in terms of the number of deaths per capita in the last one week. New York Times Database. A nation of 45 million is reporting an average of more than 30,000 new cases a day, compared to 20,000 in the United States.
Mr. Fernandez also Met Alejandro Dominguez last week, The head of Conmembol, and presented a “strict protocol” for holding the tournament if the Football Federation wanted it to proceed according to plan in Argentina.
2020 edition of Copa America Was postponed for a year Last spring after the onset of the epidemic. In football-crazy Argentina, which last hosted the event in 2011, it was seen as a joyous occasion to host some of the game’s biggest stars, including the country’s Lionel Messi. But calls to move the tournament, which takes place every four years, have increased in recent weeks elsewhere in Argentina, with opponents on Twitter using the hashtags #NoALaCopaAmericaEnArgentina, and #NoToTheCopaAmericaInArgentina.
Earlier this month, Conmembol removed Colombia as the tournament’s co-host, rejecting the country’s request to postpone it in the midst of continuing. Civil unrest and anti-government protests In which dozens of people have died.
This left Conmembol to consider holding the full championship in Argentina, amid rumors that a last-minute agreement could be made to include another host like Chile, a vaccination success story in South America that gave his More than 40 percent of the population is fully vaccinated. Vaccination is lagging behind in many other parts of the region, causing some wealthy and middle-class Latin Americans Instead find them in the United States.
Daniel Polity contributed reporting.