Qatar World Cup 2022: Argentina vs Brazil qualifier match officials suspended for 'serious errors'
Argentina and Brazil settled for a goalless draw on Tuesday in their FIFA World Cup Qualifier. However, the match was marred by several decision-making errors by the officials, leading to their suspension.
Arch-rivals Argentina and Brazil faced off on Tuesday in their highly anticipated FIFA World Cup Qualifier at the Estadio San Juan del Bicentenario. The match was severely antagonistic, with both sides battling it out to score. However, it all finished goalless. While Brazil had already sealed its place for Qatar 2022, the draw also gave Argentina the ticket to the gulf nation.
Nonetheless, the match was marred by controversies, especially regarding decision-making errors by the match officials. In one of the incidents, Nicolas Otamendi struck Raphinha in the mouth with his elbow, leaving the latter with a bloodied mouth that required five stitches at half-time. However, the referee did not caution the former nor awarded Brazil the free-kick, despite Ostojich calling for a yellow card.
"The performance of the chief referee, Andres Ismael Cunha Soca Vargas, and the [video assistant referee], Esteban Daniel Ostojich Vega ... was technically analyzed by [the referees' committee], which concluded that they committed serious and manifest errors in their duty," said CONMEBOL in a statement.
Implying that Otamendi had put Raphinha's physical integrity at risk, CONMEBOL suspended both the match officials for an indefinite period. Also, the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) announced on Wednesday that it would be filing an official complaint with the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) to demand a ban for Otamendi. Moreover, Brazil head coach Tite termed it "inconceivable" for the referee to not take any action against the Argentine.