Brazil vs Argentina: Remembering when Enner Valencia escaped police during qualifier

Enner Valencia escaped police after being substitued

What happened during Brazil vs Argentina on Sunday night needed to be seen to be believed.

Just minutes after the hotly-anticipated World Cup qualifier kicked off, Brazilian health officials put a stop to the match.

They refused to allow the four players that had travelled from England - Emiliano Buendia and Emiliano Martinez of Aston Villa, and Giovani lo Celso and Cristian Romero of Tottenham Hotspur - to play after they broke quarantine rules.

Martinez, Lo Celso and Romero all started the game in Sao Paulo but Argentina players soon walked off the pitch and left the stadium promptly after the health officials showed up.

What happens next is still up in the air.

What will happen to the four players in question? When will the match be rearranged?

Quiz: Can you name the footballer based on their Wikipedia page?

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It was just another story in the crazy world of South American football.

Remarkably, it wasn’t the first occasion that the authorities have interrupted a CONMEBOL qualifier.

In fact, the crazy episode reminded us - and other football fans - of the incredible story involving Enner Valencia back in 2016.

The former West Ham and Everton striker was representing Ecuador in a World Cup qualifier against Chile.

In the final few minutes of the match, Valencia was put on a stretcher and given an oxygen mask as he complained of altitude sickness. Reports accused him of faking his injury.

Enner Valencia was accused of faking an injury

What followed next was just comical.

And a golf buggy drove him out of the stadium, local police in Quito chased him with as many as 12 officers - some carrying shields - running after the buggy.

Valencia reportedly owed the mother of his daughter - Sharon Valencia - £13,000 in child maintenance bills.

After the Brazil vs Argentina madness, a tweet remembering Valencia's run from the police has gone viral. 

Video: Enner Valencia escapes from police

Valencia escaped the clutches of the authorities, leaving Paul Marin - the lawyer working for the mother of Valencia's five-year-old daughter - saying: "It's lamentable that certain police officers didn't collaborate with the detention of the footballer Enner Valencia, to ensure compliance with a judicial order.

"If they say this man earns so much, why doesn't he pay (the maintenance) monthly to his daughter."

We hope Valencia eventually settled the differences with his ex-wife.

The striker is currently playing for Fenerbache, while still representing the Ecuadorian national side.

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