An angry and disconsolate Uruguayan squad boycotted the post-match press conference and shunned journalists in the mixed zone after their nail-biting Copa America exit tonight.
No one from the Uruguayan squad appeared in the press room as is normal and the players studiously ignored the hundreds of reporters who had gathered outside the dressing rooms to talk with the teams. The Uruguayans instead headed direct to the team coach where they sat dejectedly until it was clearedto leave; several of them held their heads in their hands.
The angry scenes came after squabbles erupted on the pitch after the final whistle. Some of the Uruguayan players may have been angry at keeper Doni’s march from the goalline before the final spot kick was taken and the referee’s refusal to have the kick retaken.
But others may also have misinterpreted overtures by Brazilian players to Lugano, the former Sao Paulo player who missed the decisive kick. Some Brazilian players apparently approached Lugano to console him – Josue, Mineiro, Julio Baptista and others played with him at Sao Paulo – but some Uruguayans may have decided the gesture provocative and taken action.
Only the swift intervention of the Brazilian backroom staff prevented the scuffles from getting out of hand.