The sanction imposed on Paolo Guerrero was provisionally lifted, which means that he will be able to participate in the World Cup, but did you know that he is not the only player suspended by the FIFA who has triumphed?
Historical cases similar to Guerrero's
Paolo Guerrero is not the only player who has been punished by FIFA, who has then triumphed. Two similar cases can be mentioned, coincidentally in the same elimination and encounter period.
In the South American qualifiers for the 1994 United States World Cup, one of the matches was the one of Bolivia against Brazil that took place in the highlands, considered by some players as one of the worst places to play any game due to the various physical reactions that affect performance because of height.
To counteract the effects of height, Bolivians custom is the consumption of coca tea, a natural infusion by the leaf cultivated since pre-hispanic times.
Prior to the meeting between Bolivia and Brazil, the Bolivian player Miguel Ángel Rimba and the Brazilian Zetti consumed coca tea. After an anti-doping test, the results threw away cocaine, so they were temporarily suspended by the FIFA. At that time there was still no World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
Immediately, the federations of both countries appealed these suspensions arguing what had happened, emphasizing the difference between coca and cocaine. The maximum organism of the soccer carried out a meticulous investigation, and it was verified that the substance was not cocaine but the mentioned tea, reason why there was no violation of the rules and the sanction was lifted.
The novel is over, for now
On May 31, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court ruled on the sanction imposed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (TAS, for its acronym in French) to the player and captain of the Peruvian team, Paolo Guerrero. A sanction imposed after having given positive for doping last year, after the match between Peru and Argentina belonging to the South American qualifiers to seek a qualifying place for the 2018 World Cup.
It should be remembered that the anti-doping test resulted in the remains of the cocaine metabolite, benzoylecgonine, which is on the list of substances banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency.
After a long novel that dates from last year full of appeals, official statements, visits, expressions of support from various players of the classified teams, added to the anxiety that has prevailed throughout Peru for months; for now it's finally over.
The striker, accompanied by the president of the Peruvian Football Federation (FPF, by its acronym in Spanish), Edwin Oviedo, arrived in Zurich in May to meet with FIFA's top leader, Gianni Infantino. This with the purpose of studying the possibility that he could intercede with the court regarding the decision, and be able to open a breach in the sanction that will allow the participation of the player in the World Cup. The defense of the Peruvian convinced the Swiss Federal Court, which suspended the measure imposed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
With time against Paolo Guerrero, the Court finally ruled officially: "The President of the First Court of Civil Law of the Federal Court agrees the suspensive effect (...) to the appeal presented by the Peruvian footballer Paolo Guerrero against the unfounded decision of the Arbitral Tribunal of Sport (TAS). (...) Consequently, Paolo Guerrero will be able to participate in the next FIFA World Cup."
The president of the First Civil Law Division of the Federal Court granted the player's appeal against the decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport, provisionally considering the suspensive effect. This means that he can participate in the maximum football event worldwide. After its culmination, the sanction and the legal actions to which Paolo Guerrero appealed in his defense will continue, despite the fact that the appeal inserted by the World Anti-Doping Agency for the increase of six to fourteen months was well received by the Arbitral Tribunal. For the moment, the Peruvian people and the player's supporters celebrate the decision and dream high with a historical performance in Russia.
Guerrero spoke through his Twitter account thanking the support of his teammates, the president of the Peruvian Football Federation, the Fédération Internationale des Associations de Footballeurs Professionnels (FIFPro), and the various players that expressed their support worldwide; feeling the pride of wearing the shirt again.
Latin American Post | Gabriel Moros
Translated from "Paolo Guerrero, Rimba y Zetti: tres jugadores castigados por la FIFA que han triunfado"