World Cup winner Papu Gómez given 2-year doping ban

Oct 20, 2023, 01:46 PM ET

Argentine World Cup winner Alejandro “Papu” Gómez has been given a two-year ban for failing an anti-doping test, his Italian club Monza announced Friday.

Gomez tested positive last October while playing for Sevilla, shortly before joining the Argentina squad that went on to win the World Cup.

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“AC Monza announces that today, 20 October 2023, FIFA has notified the Spanish Anti-Doping Commission of the first instance ruling of the Spanish Anti-Doping Commission against the player Alejandro Dario Gomez,” the statement said.

The club said the presence of terbutaline, a drug taken to calm a bronchospasm crisis, was found in the player’s sample.

Papu Gómez joined Italian Serie A sider AC Monza from Spain’s Sevilla last month. Jonathan Moscrop/Getty Images

The forward made two appearances for Argentina as Lionel Messi led the country to its third World Cup title in Qatar in December.

Gómez was on the bench when Sevilla won the Europa League final last season, and he and the club agreed to terminate his contract Sept. 1. He joined Monza three weeks ago as a free agent and has played in two Serie A matches — without scoring — since returning to Italy.

A former captain of Atalanta, Gomez helped the Bergamo club to a string of successful seasons before a falling-out with coach Gian Piero Gasperini led him to leave for Sevilla in January 2021.

Gómez is the second Serie A player involved in a doping case this season. Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba tested positive for testosterone.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.


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