UK & World News
Paraguay Football Brawl: Two Teams Sent Off
All the players and substitutes from two football teams - 36 people in total - received red cards as a Paraguayan junior league match ended in a mass brawl.
With five minutes of the game left to play, referee Nestor Guillen sent off a player from each side, but the pair refused to leave the field and continued their fight.
In seconds, the rest of the players had joined in with some punching and aiming kung-fu kicks at their opponents.
The match officials fled to their dressing room and issued the red cards from there.
Hernan Martinez, president of the home club, Teniente Farina, said: "The referees didn't even stay on the field. As soon as the fighting broke out they went to the dressing room.
"They ran through the tunnel to their dressing room. They weren't able to see anything that happened. But, in the report, to more or less wash their hands of the responsibility, they expelled all 36 players."
Sixto Nunez, president of away club Libertad, said he thought the officials had shirked their duties in fleeing the pitch.
"The referee needed to take better care of the boys. He should have made sure that the two dismissed players were completely off the field," he said.
"Instead, the officials left the field and when the players were all leaving together that's when the fighting started again."
The players, who were all automatically suspended, are awaiting to hear about further sanctions from the league's disciplinary committee.
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