Brazilian Side Atlético Mineiro At Odds With CONMEBOL Over Copa Libertadores Final
Brazilian football club Atlético Mineiro is in conflict with South American football governing body CONMEBOL regarding the stadium where the club's Copa Libertadores final against Paraguayan side Olimpia will be played on July 24, according to EMOL. CONMEBOL is demanding the game be played in a stadium with a minimum capacity of 40,000, "and this is why it is not allowing Mineiro to play the game on its home field of Independencia de Belo Horizonte stadium." Independencia's capacity is 26,000. Mineiro President Alexandre Kalil called the decision "wicked" and warned that if the location is not changed, Brazilian clubs "will not participate in future editions of the continental tournament." Kalil's main argument is that "the stadium capacity regulation is regularly violated by CONMEBOL itself." The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) sided with Mineiro in a statement released Saturday. CBF President José Maria Marin said, "The CBF does not want to make controversy with CONMEBOL, an affiliate entity with which it maintains a strong relationship, but the CBF does want to fight for a demand that it considers legitimate" (EMOL, 7/15).