Argentina call up Martinez, Romero, Lo Celso despite travel ban

Aston Villa goalkeeper Emi Martinez and Tottenham duo Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso have been called up by Argentina for October’s World Cup Qualifiers despite the country remaining on the UK’s red travel list.

Premier League club’s agreed not to allow South American players to travel to represent their countries for last month’s international break due to quarantine rules.

As of Friday, all three players are allowed to enter Argentina if they are fully vaccinated and return a negative Covid test.

However, should they return to the UK, they would have to quarantine for 10 days upon their return.

Tottenham's Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso, right, react after Pacos de Ferreira score the opening goal
Romero and Giovani Lo Celso were punished for disobeying Spurs’ order not to join up with Argentina last month

Argentina have named the trio in their 30-man squad for World Cup Qualifiers against Paraguay, Uruguay and Peru, with the final match being played on October 15.

Villa are due to return to Premier League action against Wolves on October 16, while Spurs head to Newcastle on October 17.

During the previous international break, Villa allowed Martinez and compatriot Emi Buendia to join up with Argentina.

Meanwhile, the two Spurs players were not released for international duty, but ignored their club’s wishes and travelled to meet up with the squad regardless.

The Spurs duo are understood to have received hefty fines for disobeying the club’s orders.

Last month’s World Cup Qualifier against Brazil in Sao Paulo was called off after health officials entered the field of play to stop the match in a row over Covid rules.

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