Uruguay coach: Cavani provoked by Chilean who stuck fingers up his rear
Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez leapt to the defence of dismissed striker Edinson Cavani on Wednesday (June 24) as footage appeared to show a Chilean player attempting to provoke the star by inserting a finger into his rear.
Cavani was sent off midway through the second half after receiving a second yellow card for flicking a hand into the face of Chile defender Gonzalo Jara.
But Tabarez said Cavani had been the victim of provocation by Jara which should have been spotted by the match officials.
Post-match camera footage of the altercation appears to show Jara shoving a finger into the back of Cavani’s shorts.
Said Tabarez: “For the expulsion of Cavani, you can see what happened and what the challenge was. I refer you to the television and photos of it. It is all there.
“I can see that the referee has not seen it, but the linesman had to be able to see it from his position.”
The match was finely poised at 0-0 when the incident happened. Chile went on to score the game’s solitary goal through Mauricio Isla in the 82nd minute, and Uruguay had another man — defender Jorge Fucile — sent off in the dying moments.
But it seems that Jara has been punished for his part in the incident after reporter Juan Arango tweeted that the defender had been suspended for the rest of the tournament.
It is not the first time Jara has been involved in controversy involving a Uruguayan opponent.
In 2013, Uruguay striker Luis Suarez punched Jara after the Chilean reportedly grabbed his genitals during a World Cup qualifier.
Sources: AFP, Twitter via NBC Sports