Nunez, Uruguay players brawl in stands with fans after Copa loss

Uruguay central defender Jose Maria Gimenez said players had leapt into the melee out of concern for the safety of family members and loved ones watching the game.
Colombia's supporters (L) clash with Uruguay's supporters at the end of the Conmebol 2024 Copa America tournament semi-final football match between Uruguay and Colombia on July 10, 2024.
Colombia's supporters (L) clash with Uruguay's supporters at the end of the Conmebol 2024 Copa America tournament semi-final football match between Uruguay and Colombia on July 10, 2024. (Photo | AFP)

Liverpool star Darwin Nunez and other Uruguay players were involved in a brawl with Colombian fans which erupted after their 1-0 Copa America semi-final defeat on Wednesday.

Uruguay striker Nunez unleashed a flurry of punches at Colombian supporters after jumping into the spectator seating at Charlotte's Bank of America Stadium following an ill-tempered loss to Colombia.

Uruguay central defender Jose Maria Gimenez said players had leapt into the melee out of concern for the safety of family members and loved ones watching the game.

"This is a disaster. Our family was in danger. We had to go to the stands to take out our loved ones, with tiny newborn babies," the Atletico Madrid player said.

"There was not a single police officer... I hope those who are organising this are a little more careful with the families.

"Every game it's been happening because there are people who don't know how to handle a couple of drinks."

The overwhelming majority of the spectators in the crowd were supporting Colombia but there was no segregation between them and their Uruguayan counterparts.

Several Uruguay players climbed into the crowd, seemingly to protect fans, with Nunez prominent.

The fighting continued for several minutes until police finally intervened.

A group of around 80-100 Uruguayan fans remained in the stadium, on the pitch, long after the rest of the fans had left with Uruguay players returning to the field to meet them.

Ugly scenes also broke out on the field after the final whistle, with players and staff from both teams involved in a mass melee in the centre-circle following Colombia's victory.

CONMEBOL, the South American football confederation which organises the Copa America, issued a statement condemning the incidents.

"CONMEBOL strongly condemns any acts of violence that affects football. Our work is based on the conviction that soccer connects and unites us through its positive values.

"There is no place for intolerance and violence on and off the pitch. We invite everyone in the remaining days to pour all their passion into cheering on their national teams and having an unforgettable party."

Related Stories

No stories found.

X
The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com