RIO DE JANEIRO: Top Brazilian players staged a silent protest against Marco Polo Del Nero’s shadow continuance as head of the national football confederation writes KEIR RADNEDGE.

Del Nero, having been kicked off the executive committee of world federation FIFA by South America’s CONMEBOL and been named in an FBI corruption indictment, has stepped down ‘temporarily’ as CBF president while he tries to assure the succession for his own allies.

However Brazilian players want him to go for good now.

Hence players across Brazil folded their arms and stood still for a short time at the start of end of season matches this past weekend to protest against alleged corruption.

Players with last season’s champions Cruzeiro and 2013 South American champions Atletico Mineiro were among those who ignored the referee’s whistle to demand Del Nero’s departure.

Del Nero is the third CBF president to be indicted or arrested this year after his immediate predecessor Jose Maria Marin – currently detained in New York – after long-term fixer Ricardo Teixeira.

FC Bom Senso is a pressure group comprising hundreds of Brazilian footballers who want a clean-up. Its Twitter account said: “Del Nero must go. We will not be silenced.”

The protests were the latest in similar actions in which players passed the ball between them aimlessly, folded their arms and refused to move and sat down on the turf and refused to play.

Players with Vasco da Gama and Coritiba, whose meeting will decide who will be relegated to the second division, united in protest.

All 10 of Brazil’s Serie A games kicked off at the same time to avoid any accusations of match-fixing.