Costa Rica head coach Paulo Wanchope was involved in a fight in the stands as he watched the country’s under-23 squad during an Olympic qualifying match against Panama on Tuesday.
Costa Rica head coach Paulo Wanchope was involved in a fight in the stands as he watched the country’s under-23 squad during a match against Panama on Tuesday.
The match, which ended in a 0–0 draw, took place at Estadio Maracaná in Panama City.
In a video, Wanchope is seen trying to enter the pitch through a gate after the match was over, and then proceeds to push a child after being told he could not go onto the field. Wanchope then returns and begins to fight with a security guard. Both are seen trying to punch and kick each other. Security guards and police then pulled the two fighting men apart.
“Security was bothering him. I believe that authorities from UNCAF (Central American Football Union) have to calm things. Authorities came in yelling and weren't calming thing things down,” Wanchope's brother Javier reportedly said.
UNCAF has yet to comment on the incident.
The incident of physical violence is the second one involving a CONCACAF coach in recent weeks. Mexico manager Miguel Herrera was fired for allegedly assaulting a journalist following El Tri's triumph in the Gold Cup final.
Wanchope, a former Derby, Manchester City, West Ham and Malaga striker, became Costa Rica's manager by replacing Jorge Luis Pinto, who led Los Ticos to the 2014 World Cup quarterfinals.
- Scooby Axson