The UK is urgently deploying several hundred armed troops in and around Brazil as the England squad prepare to repel a rampant Uruguayan insurgency on Thursday evening.
David Cameron discussed the crisis with his top national security advisers and Gary Lineker on Monday night after earlier telling parliament that up to 275 troops could be sent to Brazil to provide support and security for England players and supporters.
The moves come as the coalition wrestles with an array of options for helping England repel a multi-national insurgency that threatens to seriously out-gun and out-manoeuvre the England squad at any opportunity.
Calling the threat to England “existential”, Cameron said that air strikes were also a possibility.
“They’re not the whole answer, but they may well be one of the options that are important,” he said.
“When you have foreign players assassinating our great team in these massacres, you have to stop that. And you do what you need to do if you need to try to stop it from the air or otherwise.”
Taken together, the developments suggest a willingness by Cameron to send UK forces into a collapsing footballing situation in order to quell the brutal humiliation of our squad before it morphs into outright failure and expulsion from the competition.
Downing Street would not confirm that SAS ‘snatch and grab’ forces were under consideration to weaken the opposition, but BBC commentator Rio Ferdinand said “at this stage, they are almost certainly looking at Uruguay captain Diego Lugano as a possible target.”
“Take him out and the rest of the team will scatter, giving us the best chance of success.”
In a separate rare move, Downing Street also confirmed that Tony Blair was providing consultancy ahead of the operation, paving the way for weapons inspections or even full-scale invasion, depending on the post-match analysis by Alan Shearer and Phil Neville.
“It’s entirely possible that Brazil has WMDs,” said Tony Blair.
“And whether they exist or not, we’ll find them.”
“The first sanction we’ll impose is to force England through to the quarter finals.”