Italy backs stringent new drug tests | World Soccer

Players who refuse to take blood tests for drugs should not be selected for the national team, the president of the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) has stated.

The FIGC is involved in a dispute with the Italian Footballers Association (AIC) over plans to tighten regulations goverrning drug tests, after some players refused to give samples earlier this month

“Players who don’t accept blood testing will not be called up for international duty,” Franco Carraro was quoted as saying in La Gazzetta dello Sport on Wednesday.

“They will also be subject to random tests throughout the season.”

Meanwwhile, AIC president Sergio Campana claims that the imposition of sanctions has no basis in law.

“To speak about obligatory blood testing is not right. Every test needs the informed consent of the player. I have grave doubts about the possibility of suspension or sanctions against those who refuse to give their consent,” he said last week.

The current dispuet between the two parties began when six out of twelve players in Italy’s top two divisions refused to give blood samples after matches on January 11.

“Let’s not over-dramatise the refusals. After all, we’re still in a transitional period,” Carraro said.

“Urine tests backed up by blood tests are new and we’re the first country that carries out these checks during the season.

“Our aim is that by the end of the season the percentage of those refusing to take the tests will be close to zero.”

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