FIFA postpones South American World Cup qualifiers-Xinhua

FIFA postpones South American World Cup qualifiers

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2020-03-13 13:28:12

BOGOTA, March 12 (Xinhua) -- FIFA has postponed the start of the South American zone's 2022 World Cup qualifiers in response to the spreading coronavirus, officials said on Thursday.

The announcement came a day after the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) told football's governing body that each of its 10 member federations were opposed to staging the first two rounds of qualifiers from March 26 to 31, as scheduled.

"We will continue to work with and consult you and your team to be able to find possible dates in which these matches can be played," FIFA secretary general Fatma Samoura said in a missive to her CONMEBOL counterpart Jose Astigarraga.

"[It] will require ... solutions that take into account the unique and fast-changing nature of this exceptional situation," Samoura added.

Five-time World Cup winners Brazil had been due to host Bolivia and travel to Peru in their opening qualifiers while two-time champions Argentina were scheduled to host Ecuador and visit Bolivia.

FIFA also suspended 18 fixtures scheduled next week for the Copa Libertadores - South America's top club competition - adhering to bans placed by several countries in the region on large public gatherings.

Asian World Cup qualifiers scheduled for March were also postponed this week because of the coronavirus outbreak.


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