Uruguay to be banned from the World Cup in Brazil?
Analysts believe that the South American country’s World Cup place may be in danger after its FA board resigned.
Uruguay's Football Association (AUF) board has resigned following the national government's decision to withdraw police protection at matches involving the country's big clubs Peñarol and Nacional because of fan violence.
"The well-publicised acts that have occurred in recent times show the need for [the AUF board to take] a step to one side and allow other political views to govern our football," said the resignation letter from the AUF president, Sebastián Bauzá.
El Pais and El Observador newspapers have both speculated that FIFA might interpret the decision by the Uruguayan President, José Mujica, to withdraw police protection as interference in football affairs.
FIFA prohibits such interference and the same sources have speculated that the world football governing authority might suspend the AUF and the Uruguay team from World Cup.
The president of South American football's governing body CONMEBOL, Eugenio Figueredo, however, told Reuters that he knew of no FIFA investigation and that he did not believe there was any risk of the 2010 semi-finalists Uruguay not playing at the World Cup this year.
"When governments intervene, a national association is provisionally suspended but I have no proof the government played a part in Bauzá's exit," said Figueredo.
"The World Cup is already on top of us. Can you imagine a national association being suspended [now] for an internal or sports politics matter?"
"FIFA is a bit more serious. I don't think Uruguay's place at the World Cup is at risk."
Several police officers and supporters were injured when Nacional fans fought police at the end of their team's 4-2 home defeat by Argentina's Newell's Old Boys in a Libertadores Cup match in Montevideo last Wednesday.
Uruguay are due to play England, Italy and Costa Rica at the World Cup.