Brazil sports leader wants all league play halted amid floods

Brazil’s sports minister Andre Fufuca has called for the country’s football confederation (CBF) to temporarily suspend all football activities following the unprecedented natural disaster in Rio Grande do Sul.

At least 85 people died, 372 were injured, 131 are still missing and more than 159,000 have been displaced from their homes following the heavy rains that led to widespread flooding in the southern state last week, according to local government figures.

The CBF suspended the games in which Rio Grande do Sul teams were involved, with Grêmio, Internacional and Juventude the top-tier teams affected.

Fufuca believes that is not enough and that all national football competitions, including men’s and women’s football, should be temporarily halted.

“Given the calamitous public scenario and the severe consequences from the floods for the population of Rio Grande do Sul, we will appeal to the CBF for the temporary suspension of the Brazilian Men’s and Women’s Football Championships,” Fufuca told ESPN Brasil.

“It should be stopped. It is a humanitarian and sporting loss. Stopping for two weeks would be reasonable. We will send a letter this Friday to the CBF, making ourselves available to dialogue and find a joint path.”