Defender Renan Lodi, from Atlético de Madrid, was left out of the Brazilian team for not having been vaccinated against COVID-19.
"Renan Lodi wasted this chance to be called up because he didn't get vaccinated," coach Tite said on Thursday, announcing the squad he will face in the next two World Cup qualifying matches.
“That is the information we received. He missed the opportunity to be considered for not having been vaccinated.” The coach concluded.
Team manager Juninho Paulista said Lodi would not have been able to enter Ecuador, where Brazil will play on January 27 in Quito. In addition, he would have required a five-day quarantine upon entering Brazil for the February 1 match against Paraguay in Belo Horizonte.
FIFA has not yet decided what to do with last September's match between Brazil and Argentina in Sao Paulo, suspended after seven minutes because health authorities took four Argentine players away, claiming they had violated coronavirus protocols.
“As far as the sport goes, we stayed on the field and did the right thing. Legally, according to the laws of the country, we did what was appropriate,” Tite said. “Now I hope that FIFA makes a statement.”
Also left out of the team was Neymar, who is recovering from an ankle injury suffered in late November.