2024 Olympics: Defending champions Brazil fail to qualify for football tournament

Published on: 12 February 2024

Defending Olympic gold medalists Brazil failed to secure qualification for the men’s football tournament at the Paris 2024 Olympics after suffering a defeat to Argentina.

Argentina’s under-23 team clinched a crucial 1-0 victory over Brazil in Venezuela, sealing their spot in this summer’s tournament at the expense of the Brazilians.

This marks the first time since 2004 that Brazil’s men’s football team will be absent from the Olympic Games.

The decisive goal came from Argentinos Juniors forward Luciano Gondou, who found the back of the net after 77 minutes, capitalizing on a delivery from Brighton left-back Valentin Barco.

The qualification spots for South America were determined through the CONMEBOL pre-Olympic tournament held in January and February. Alongside Argentina, Paraguay secured their qualification with a 2-0 victory over Venezuela.

Thiago Almada of Atlanta emerged as the top scorer of the tournament, tallying an impressive five goals.

The men’s football tournament at the Olympics features under-23 sides with the allowance of a maximum of three overage players.

Brazil had previously clinched consecutive gold medals at Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020, triumphing over Germany in a penalty shootout on home soil in 2016 before defending their title with an extra-time victory against Spain.