Saudi Arabia forward Fahad Al-Muwallad was withdrawn from their World Cup squad on Sunday as a precaution due to an ongoing doping case.
The Al-Shabab forward was handed an 18-month ban last May by the Saudi Arabian Anti-Doping Committee after he tested positive for the banned substance Furosemide.
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However, the Saudi Sport Arbitration Center reduced his ban in late August, and decided that the period during which he was suspended was sufficient.
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) appealed the decision, and, according to local media reports, a longer ban is expected for the 28-year-old, who in 2019 was suspended for one year, also for doping.
The Saudi team said on Twitter that coach Herve Renard made the decision “as a precautionary measure after reviewing the developments of WADA’s appeal … and after consulting with the Saudi FA legal department.”
Renard has called up Al-Shabab’s veteran forward Nawaf Al-Abed to replace Al-Muwallad.
Saudi Arabia are in Group C alongside Argentina, Mexico and Poland at the finas which run from Nov. 20 to Dec. 18.