The mayor of Rio de Janeiro said on Friday that he would not hesitate to cancel the America’s Cup scheduled games in his city if the Covid-19 Pandemic worsens. The competition shifted from Argentina to Brazil on Tuesday. It will begin on June 13th. “I don’t see any advantage in organizing Copa America matches,” Mayor Eduardo Paes said at a weekly press conference on the state of health. “We didn’t ask for the America’s Cup and if you want my opinion, I don’t think it’s the right time to organize a tournament like this.”
The mayor said club matches, such as the Brazilian league and Copa Libertadores, were played behind closed doors in Rio, which was in accordance with a decree in force until June 14, the day after the Copa America opened in Brazil.
“But if the situation worsens, we will have another decree that will put an end to the city’s football competitions,” he said, adding that the organizers have not “contacted the City health authorities at any time.”
Rio will host the first of eight Copa del Rey matches between Lionel Messi’s Argentina and Chile at the 2016 Nilton Santos Stadium, home of the 2016 Olympic Games.
Seven matches will be played at the stadium, including the semi-finals. The final is for the city’s iconic Maracana Stadium.
The cup, which was delayed by 12 months due to the pandemic, was believed to be organized jointly by Colombia and Argentina.
But the Confederation of South America (CONMEBOL) withdrew the first on May 20 for violent protests against the government, and the second on Sunday as a result of the Covid-19 wave.
On Monday, the Brazilian announcement that Brazil would host the tournament instead of Argentina and Colombia sparked a critical avalanche in Brazil, killing nearly 470,000 people as a result of Covid-19.
But CONMEBOL wanted to thank far-right president Jair Bolsonaro for “opening the doors of his country.”
The head of state, who has been heavily criticized by most pandemic treatment experts, has made a number of statements this week in favor of the Brazilian Cup America.
He said it was logical to organize a tournament like this if the country already hosts international club competitions like the Libertadores Cup.
Several stars from other South American countries, such as Uruguayan Luis Suarez, have already spoken out against playing in the American Cup Pandemic.
Rumors of a boycott have also begun to emerge from the Brazilian group.
Several media outlets have reported that Coach Tite may resign due to his disagreement with his Federation over the organization of the tournament in his country.
Tit said on Thursday that they had a “very clear” opinion on the issue and would state it after the second of two qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup, against Ecuador on Friday night and Paraguay on Tuesday.
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