WADA drops doping case vs Mexico soccer players
Five Mexican soccer players who tested positive for clenbuterol
before the Gold Cup will not face sanctions after FIFA determined
the tests were caused by contaminated meat.
The World Anti-Doping Agency said Wednesday it had dropped its
appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport, where it planned to
challenge a Mexico Football Federation decision clearing the
players of doping.
WADA said it accepted FIFA’s ”compelling evidence” from the
recent Under-17 World Cup in Mexico that the country has a
”serious health problem” with meat contaminated with
”WADA applauds FIFA for the further research it has
initiated,” the anti-doping watchdog said in a statement.
FIFA gathered the evidence while working with the government of
”The studies conducted by FIFA showed the correctness of the
footballers’ claim that the positive samples were the result of
meat they had ingested at a training camp ahead of the
tournament,” the governing body of international soccer said.
Mexico won the Gold Cup in June despite the absence of
goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa, defenders Edgar Duenas and Francisco
Rodriguez, and midfielders Antonio Naelson and Christian Bermudez.
It beat the United States 4-2 in the final.
WADA said Mexico’s government has agreed to address the issue of
farmers giving steroids to livestock, which is illegal.
”Already several arrests have been made pursuant to these laws
and large amounts of clenbuterol seized. Investigations are to
continue,” WADA said.
WADA issued a warning to athletes traveling to Mexico to compete
at the two-week Pan American Games, which open Friday in
”If possible, they should eat in cafeterias designated as safe
by event organizers and also try to eat in large numbers,” WADA
advised. ”The state government in Guadalajara has taken steps to
ensure the meat available to athletes at the Pan American Games
will not be contaminated.”
The Mexican case is the second time this year that WADA has
dropped an appeal after an athlete used a defense of contaminated
meat to explain consuming clenbuterol.
German table tennis player Dimitrij Ovtcharov tested positive
after competing in China, which also has long-standing issues with
illegally feeding steroids to livestock.
Three-time Tour de France winner Alberto Contador will use the
same argument as part of his defense at CAS next month.
WADA and the International Cycling Union appealed to the sports
court after a Spanish cycling federation tribunal accepted
Contador’s explanation that he inadvertently ate a contaminated
steak during his 2010 Tour victory.
Contador’s four-day hearing is scheduled to begin Nov. 21.