The Chile squad had to face accusations that some of them spent the early hours of Thursday morning ahead of their showdown against Brazil in the Copa quarter-finals boozing it up and causing trouble in their hotel.
Sources quoted in Santiago’s La Tercera newspaper say the guilty players were captain Jorge Valdivia, Reinaldo Navia, Jorge Vargas, Pablo Contreras and Rodrigo Tello.
The squad had been given time off to celebrate reaching the quarters but it got out of hand and those responsible allegedly attacked employees in the hotel restaurant, threw food and insulted other female customers. The hotel lodged a complaint after the incident.
Coach Nelson Acosta has said he’s disappointed with the players responsible who he said deny most of the accusations against them. Acosta said he would wait for further evidence of misbehaving before deciding on sanctions against those involved.
Jorge Vargas insinuated journalists were blowing the affair out of proportion, saying that journalists might not drink but the players did. “We drank a bit, but nothing more than that. We were not involved in an argument nor did we go out into the street. We were always in the hotel and they people there never said anything to us. There were never any women in our rooms.”
Vargas accused the Chilean press of stirring up trouble because the squad did not let them travel with them on their plane from Puerto La Cruz following the Mexico game, forcing them to rely on Venezuela’s ramshackle and already overstretched transport network.