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AFA holding meeting to discuss Copa withdrawal

The Argentine Football Association’s (AFA) executive secretary has confirmed it is holding an emergency board meeting to discuss pulling out of the Copa America Centenario because of government interference.

Gerardo Martino is set to lead Argentina as they attempt to lift a first major trophy since winning the Copa America in 1993, with their opener against defending champions Chile scheduled to take place on June 6 at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara.

However, the Argentine government has recently suspended the AFA’s June 30 presidential elections and hired two inspectors to look into claims TV revenues have been misappropriated.

And the saga could derail Argentina’s bid for Copa glory, with executive secretary Damian Dupiellet saying an emergency meeting had been called to determine whether the national team should return from their pre-tournament base in California.

He told radio station La Red: “The elections are suspended for 90 days and could be suspended for 90 days more. 

“Two inspectors have been sent to carry out an internal review. This is clear interference in the life of the AFA.”

Government interference in national associations is banned by FIFA and Dupiellet added: “We will ask CONMEBOL and FIFA to evaluate if this is against their institutions’ rules.

“The Executive Board will decide tomorrow [Tuesday] if the national team must return to Argentina.”

Tue 31 May, 2016
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