Tottenham and France captain Hugo Lloris played a pivotal role in getting the World Cup ban on Peru captain Paolo Guerrero lifted, thus enabling him to play at this summer’s World Cup, it has emerged.
Initially, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) imposed a 14-month ban, however this has been temporarily suspended by a Swiss tribunal so that they can consider the forward’s appeal.
Peru is in the same group as France, Australia and Denmark and the captains of those three countries, Lloris, Australia’s Mile Jedinak and Denmark’s Simon Kjaer signed a letter calling for the 34 year old to be allowed to participate, a remarkable gesture.
Guerrero was initially banned for 12 months after testing positive for cocaine following a qualifier against Argentina on October 6th, however his suspension was then halved by FIFA’s appeal committee but the World Anti-Doping Agency appealed to CAS who then raised the ban to 14 months.
The Peru captain, who has never played in a World Cup, claimed that the cocaine was put into a tea without his knowledge.
While it has been a court that has made this intervention, the role played by the captains of Denmark, France and Australia cannot be underestimated. It is almost certain that their contribution would have been used in some part to persuade the court to lift the suspension pending an appeal.