Costa Rica Complains To FIFA

The Football federation of Costa Rica has sent a  letter to FIFA, the world governing body of football, and demanded an explanation as to why so many of its players were asked to submit to anti-doping controls after a surprise victory over Italy.

After Friday’s 1-0 win, seven Costa Rica players were tested that angered team officials who remarked it may lead people to believe that the world governing body of football suspects Costa Ricans of doping. Adrian Gutierrez, the president of Costa Rica’s selection committee, remarked we believe in, accept and trust doping controls that FIFA carries out, but we want an explanation as to why so many of the players were called in and added what causes surprise at the world level is that they take seven players in one sitting for anti-doping tests, which gives an image of suspicion that Costa Rican players are doping.

The Costa Rica federation said FIFA remarked eight players were not available for testing before the World Cup when an anti-doping commission of FIFA visited Costa Rica as part of a routine control carried out on national teams competing in Brazil. Two of those players undergo testing after the Uruguay match and the other six were tested after the Italy match and a seventh Costa Rica player was chosen by lottery. FIFA was challenged by Coach Jorge Luis Pinto to test all his players and even himself after the next match of Costa Rica against England on Tuesday in Belo Horizonte. Pinto remarked he is happy that they do these types of tests and added if they want in the next match, they can test all 11 players on the pitch and even me.

A FIFA spokeswoman said that two of the Costa Rica players were called for the post-match anti-doping tests as usual while the remaining five needed to be tested for their so-called biological passports. The spokeswoman added the decision to test the seven was standard procedure and there was nothing suspicious.

Football legend Diego Maradona hit out at FIFA after claiming that seven of Costa Rica’s players were subjected to post-match anti-doping controls. Maradona alleged that doping scrutiny on Costa Rica was due to fears that sponsors would not pay up if bigger teams like Italy failed to get out of the group stage at the World Cup finals. The football legend from Argentina said decision of FIFA amounted to a lack of respect for the rules and said he is not impressed by FIFA’s explanation. Maradona said this is only happening because some people are annoyed Costa Rica, and not the big teams, are going through to the next round, and so the sponsors won’t pay what they’d promised to pay. He went on to remark that it is against the rules as two players from each team are supposed to undergo doping controls.

Costa Rica stunned South American champions Uruguay 3-1 last week and then won 1-0 over four-time champions Italy in Recife to qualify for the last 16 of the World Cup.

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