Romero, Lo Celso and Martinez WILL stay with Argentina for three World Cup qualifiers

Tottenham and Aston Villa dealt major blow as Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni confirms Cristian Romero, Giovani Lo Celso and Emi Martinez WILL stay with his squad for their three World Cup qualifiers and are likely to miss the Premier League’s return

  • Villa struck a deal to have their players released after two games in September
  • Scaloni insists players will remain with the squad for all three games this month
  • Brazil, Colombia, Uruguay, Ecuador and Paraguay are expected to follow suit











Tottenham and Aston Villa’s fears have been confirmed with Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni insisting his Premier League players will remain with his squad for all three World Cup qualifiers.

Clubs were hoping their stars could be withdrawn early from this fortnight’s South American matches in order to be return in time for the Premier League’s resumption.

Sportsmail reported the growing concerns among some of the impacted sides that they were losing the battle.

Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni insists his Premier League players will remain with his squad

Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni insists his Premier League players will remain with his squad

And Scaloni, whose squad includes Spurs pair Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso plus Villa goalkeeper Emi Martinez, said: ‘We are not going to do the same as last time with the Premier League players.

‘Before the game with Venezuela I said that they came to play all three games but the players raised a difficult decision for me and I understood it, I released them.

‘Now the players are here to play the three games. Under no point of view they will leave earlier.’

The situation also affects Premier League players from Brazil, Colombia, Uruguay, Ecuador and Paraguay who are all expected to follow Argentina’s firm stance.

Argentina squad features Spurs pair Cristian Romero (left) and Giovani Lo Celso

Argentina squad features Spurs pair Cristian Romero (left) and Giovani Lo Celso

Argentina squad features Spurs pair Cristian Romero (left) and Giovani Lo Celso

Villa struck a deal to have their Argentinian players released after two games of the September break. The Spurs duo also left the group at the same time.

That was agreed to limit the number of matches they missed with Government rules stating 10 days of strict quarantine was required on their return to England from a red-list country.

For this international break, the rules have been relaxed. Players still have to quarantine for 10 days but can train and play if they are fully vaccinated.

Though the proximity of the third round of qualifiers – some taking place in the early hours of next Friday – to the Premier League’s resumption means many are still likely to miss the first game back.

West Ham striker Michail Antonio (above) will miss Jamaica's matches this month

West Ham striker Michail Antonio (above) will miss Jamaica’s matches this month

PFA chief executive Maheta Molango has called for the quarantine period to be halved. He said: ‘The players understand that they are not above the law.. What they’re saying is ‘why a 10-day quarantine?’ When they go from one bubble to another bubble, make it five days. It’s a unanimous opinion (among players) at the highest level, not just Premier League but also EFL and WSL.’

West Ham’s Michail Antonio has pulled out of Jamaica’s squad due to the ‘logistical and travel difficulties involved at present.’ Jamaica have games against the United States, Canada and Honduras.

Meanwhile Manchester United striker Edinson Cavani has been given the green light to feature in Uruguay’s qualifier against Brazil next Friday.

Argentina’s trip to Brazil last month was controversially suspended just after kick-off because their Premier League-based quartet failed to undergo the required fortnight quarantine period having been in the UK in the previous 14 days before their arrival. But Brazil have now relaxed their quarantine requirements and Cavani will be granted entry.

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