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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

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    Copa Conflict: Major brawl breaks out following Uruguay loss to Colombia

    The 2024 Copa America semi-final on Thursday night between Uruguay and Colombia was always set to be a watertight affair. A game between two teams that have been historic rivals for some time now.

    On paper there was very little that separated the two teams, with both possessing a high amount of quality offensively. They have both also put on a solid defensive display, so the victor was entirely determined on who played the better brand of football on the night.

    The tension at the Hard Rock Stadium, in Miami Garden, USA was pulpable, as both sets of fans scurried to find their seats. Some joined in song, whilst others collected themselves calmly to avoid nerves.

    Colombia led for majority of the game, thanks to a 39th minute strike from Crystal Palace midfielder, Jefferson Lerma. This was comforting but not calming, as it proved insufficient in calming down the rowdy fans.

     Things eventually boiled over control just before the half, as Daniel Munoz was shown a red card for dissent by Mexican referee, Cesar Ramos Palazuelos. This soured the mood even more and left Los Cafetaros down to 10 men.

    The second half saw no changes to the score line, and as time ticked on, both sets of fans got more agitated. Colombia was hanging on to their slim lead with 10 men, while Uruguay just could not find their gears. That was it, the referee blew the final whistle, and Colombia walked away with a rough 1-0 win and a booked ticket to the final.

    A Not So Happy Ending

    Following the final whistle, the real fireworks set off! Darwin Nunez, along with his teammates confronted the Colombian fans in what turned out to be a messy showdown.

    According to reports by goal, the players were allegedly defending their families, who were swarmed by intoxicated overly excited Colombian supporters. It was a terrible showing for football and brought shame to what should have been a beautiful game. Punches were exchanged between multiple players and fans, and endangered the reputation of CONMEBOL, the South American Football Federation.

    Here’s what fans on X had to say about the brawl…

    @UTDTrey posted, “Darwin Nunez jumping into the stands to protect his family. Insane”

    @TrollFootball posted, “Darwin Nunez attacked drunk Colombian fans to protect his wife and his child. He will gladly take the consequences to keep his family safe. But the real question is why was there a lack of security? We have a World Cup in this country in 2 years.”

    Looking Ahead

    CONMEBOL must work harder to ensure the safety of the players and their families who come in numbers to support them. They have released a statement condemning the events of Wednesday night.

    The statement read: “CONMEBOL strongly condemns any act of violence that affects football. Our work is based on the conviction that football connects us and unites us, through its positive values. There is no place for intolerance and violence on and off the field. We invite everyone in the remaining days to pour all their passion into cheering on their teams and having an unforgettable party.”

    This result sees Colombia take on Argentina in the final in what promises to be an all or nothing game of football. The game will take place on the 15th of July, at 02:00 CAT on Monday morning.

    Who will be the champions of America?

    Main image: Sky News

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