After all the posturing and threats, common sense has prevailed with regards to the eligibilities of those players who were not allowed to join their respective national teams over the preceding international break. Following discussions between FIFA, the Premier League, and the UK government, the affected national associations have all dropped their complaints, as confirmed by FIFA in a statement late last night.
This means that Thiago Silva will be eligible to play today (and on Tuesday against Zenit St Petersburg in the Champions League), with Thomas Tuchel saying yesterday that he was hopeful of a positive resolution but we were prepared for either outcome.
“[...] it’s enough if I get the final decision tomorrow. We will take the latest decision tomorrow morning and we still hope he can play.”
-Thomas Tuchel; source: Football.London
While unconfirmed by either side, let’s hope these discussions between the governing bodies included some provisions for the next international break, since the current COVID concerns and various travel restrictions and quarantine requirements aren’t going away anytime soon.
Based on positive signals and constructive dialogue FIFA has received from the UK government towards the international match window in October, recognising that players have no control over the extreme situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and sanitary restrictions currently imposed and, as a sign of good faith, goodwill and cooperation, the member associations of Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Paraguay, in close consultation with FIFA, have taken the decision to withdraw their complaints in relation to the England-based players, and players bound to play in England, who were not released for the recent international matches.
On 8 September 2021, the FIFA President, The FA Interim Chair and Premier League Chair sent a joint letter to the UK Prime Minister. The UK government is now open to find a reasonable solution with the three organisations, who are working closely together in a spirit of mutual understanding, in the interests of everyone.