The threat of exclusion from the 2022 World Cup hovers seriously over Ecuador, accused of having fielded a Colombian player on their team.
The shadow of a scandal hangs five months before the start of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar (from November 21 to December 18).
Ecuador could be excluded from the competition for which the selection qualified by finishing in one of the first four places in the South American Zone.
Chile presents two documents that would prove that the player named Castillo is Colombian.
But in May, Chile filed a complaint in which it assured that the player Byron Castillo was not Ecuadorian but Colombian.
Chilean lawyer, Eduardo Carlezzo, held a press conference on Tuesday where he released two documents that he said prove Castillo’s true nationality.
He thus presented a baptism certificate dated June 1, 2022 indicating the date of the player’s baptism on December 25, 1996 in the diocese of Tumaco (Nariño, Colombia).
The second document corresponds to the registration of Byron Castillo in the Colombian public health files. The player thus appears in “the database of affiliates of the health social security system” within the department of Nariño, in the municipality of Tumaco.
According to the Chilean defense, the defender “enjoys the advantages and guarantees of being a Colombian citizen”.
Verdict Friday, June 10
These two documents are said to be in the possession of Fifa, which has studied this file with interest. The Ecuadorian Federation would have already defended and justified itself to the international body before the final verdict which will fall in the next few hours.
According to Marca, the decision will indeed be made on Friday (June 10).
Ecuador are in Group A with hosts Qatar, Senegal and the Netherlands. The country must participate in the fourth world in its history and must face Senegal for its first match of the competition, on November 21. But all of that is currently on hold.