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Called up to the Brazilian team that will compete in the Copa América between June 20 and July 14 in the United States, Lucas Paquetá faces a serious accusation. The Football Association (FA), the English federation, indicted the player for misconduct related to sports betting.

Paquetá, who plays for West Ham in the Premier League, is suspected of forcing cards to be received on four different occasions, benefiting the betting market, according to an FA investigation.

The CBF, together with coach Dorival Júnior, is analyzing the situation carefully. Although Paquetá has not been convicted and still has until June 3 to present his defense, there is great concern.

The possibility of a cut from the national team is not ruled out, as the athlete will have to focus on his defense in the coming weeks. If convicted, Paquetá could be suspended from football for a long period.

The players called up who play in Europe, including Paquetá, begin performing in Orlando, in the United States, on May 30th.

The preparation for the Copa América will be in Florida, with two friendly matches planned: against Mexico, in Texas, on June 8, and against the USA, in Orlando, on June 12. The CBF must send the final list of 23 players for the Copa América by June 12, allowing changes until that date.

Dorival Júnior must talk to Paquetá on the phone. There is concern about the emotional state of the athlete, who denies all accusations. The athlete claims to have cooperated with the FA investigation.

The lack of definition regarding the FA’s deadlines for a decision is also a concern, as a possible suspension during the Copa América would compromise Brazil’s participation.

Understand the case of Lucas Paquetá

Paquetá was accused of breaching FA Rule E5.1 by directly influencing conduct at West Ham Premier League games.

The matches investigated are against Leicester City, on November 12, 2022; Aston Villa, on March 12, 2023; Leeds United, on May 21, 2023; and Bournemouth, on August 12, 2023.

“It is alleged that he sought to directly influence the progress, conduct or any other aspect or occurrence of these matches. Therefore, he intentionally sought to receive a card from the referee with the improper purpose of affecting the betting market so that one or more people could profit,” the FA stated in an official statement.

Paquetá responded on his social media, declaring surprise at the FA’s accusation. He said he cooperated fully during the nine-month investigation and denied all allegations.

“I deny the allegations in full and will fight with all my might to clear my name. Due to the ongoing lawsuit, I will not provide further comment,” the player wrote.