Turnstiles, barrels, chairs — all hurled by fans onto the pitch over a tall gate as all hell broke loose when Costa Rica’s Alajuelense took on Guatemala’s Municipal in the UNCAF (Central American) Cup’s third place consolation game at the Morena Soto stadium. Hexagonal Blog described the scene live last Tuesday:
The players of both teams, as well as the referees, ran toward the field entrance located behind one of the goals — in the section where the disturbances are taking place. They’re running under heavy guard by the riot cops.
As I was writing that previous sentence, another unit of riot police charged through the section where most of the disturbances were taking place, and they seem to have taken control. You can see images of injured police officers being carried away, and of innocent fans, many holding small children, looking on in amazement and horror.
The situation seems to be out of control. I’m listening to the Spanish-language commentator on Gol TV right now (it’s the Costa Rican feed actually), and it seems that Alajuelense’s barras only arrived at the match during the second half, and they devoted their time to making chants and threats against the directors of the club.
Video of the game is below; the crowd trouble is shown from 7:00 into the video onwards.
The events proved devastating for Alajuelense. Manager Carlos Restrepo and General Manage Francisco Aguilar both resigned, the club were fined US$10,000, their stadium was banned from hosting international games for six months, and Municipal were awarded a 3-0 victory.