Manchester United winger Antony dropped from Brazil squad amid domestic violence allegations
Gabriel Jesus will replace Antony in Brazil’s CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers squad
Manchester United footballer Antony was dropped from Brazil’s World Cup qualifiers squad on Monday amid allegations of domestic violence levelled against the winger. Antony is accused of assaulting his former girlfriend Gabriela Cavallin on January 15. According to reports, Antony had attacked Gabriela in a Manchester hotel room. The allegations of domestic violence were first made back in June. Further complaints were made public by Antony’s ex-partner yesterday.
Antony was named in Brazil’s 23-member football squad which is scheduled to take part in CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying games against Bolivia and Peru. Latest allegations, however, cast aspersions on his on-field future.
“Due to the facts that became public this Monday involving Manchester United player Antony, and which need to be investigated, and in order to safeguard the alleged victim, the player, the Brazilian team and the CBF, the organisation informs that the athlete has been withdrawn from the Brazilian team,” read a statement shared by the Brazil Football Confederation (CBF).
The Sao Paulo and Greater Manchester Police are currently looking into the whole matter. “Greater Manchester Police is aware of the allegations made and enquiries remain ongoing to establish the circumstances surrounding this report,” read a statement issued by the Greater Manchester Police.
Responding to the allegations, Antony stated that the "accusations are false."
"Out of respect for my fans, friends and family, I feel obligated to speak publicly about the false accusations I have been a victim of. From the beginning I have handled this issue seriously and with respect, providing the due clarifications to the police authority. The police inquest is under the cover of justice and therefore I cannot make its content public. However, I can say with confidence that the accusations are false and the evidence already produced and more to be produced show that I am innocent of the accusations made,” Antony had said in a statement, which is now not available on social media.
Having played 48 matches so far in the Manchester United jersey, Antony has eight goals under his belt. He has till now taken part in four Premier League games this season. In his latest Manchester United appearance, the Red Devils had to suffer a 3-1 away defeat at the hands of Arsenal.
Antony represented Brazil at the FIFA World Cup in Qatar last year. In international football, Antony has so far netted two goals in 16 games. The Brazil team management picked Arsenal striker Gabriel Jesus as Antony’s replacement for this month’s FIFA World Cup qualifiers. In their first qualifying fixture, Selecao will host Bolivia in Belem, Para Friday night. The match between Brazil and Peru is scheduled to take place in Lima next week.