CONMEBOL said on Sunday that Argentina’s hosting of the Copa America football tournament has been postponed “in light of the current circumstances,” as the country grapples with a record coronavirus outbreak. The South American football governing body said it was examining alternative bids to host the tournament after Colombia was stripped of its co-hosting obligations last week due to deadly violence. “In light of the present circumstances, CONMEBOL has decided to postpone the organising of the Copa America in Argentina,” the governing body said in a tweet.
“CONMEBOL is weighing the offers of additional countries that have expressed interest in hosting the continental championship.”
The Copa America was supposed to be held last year, but it was postponed for a year owing to the coronavirus epidemic.
On Monday, officials are due to meet to discuss the next steps in hosting the event.
In an Argentine survey released on Friday, the majority of respondents said the event should not be held since the country is in the midst of the pandemic’s worst phase ever.
Argentina is under a nine-day lockdown and is having record daily infections less than two weeks before the Copa America begins.
The Fernandez government hoped that the lockdown, which began on May 22, would level the infection curve in time for the sporting event.
Argentina had given CONMEBOL with their “strict procedure” for hosting the tournament in its entirety, which included the construction of extra stadiums.
On May 20, CONMEBOL denied Colombia’s request to postpone the tournament from June 13 to July 10 due to a wave of demonstrations and social turmoil, as well as an increase of Covid-19 cases.
Argentina was left as the single host, however a poll done by Poliarquia among a representative sample of 1,274 city-dwelling residents indicated that 70% felt Argentina should withdraw.
Only 20% said the tournament should remain on Argentine soil, while 10% were uncertain.