Santos continues to struggle

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:53 IST

Dozens of Santos fans interrupted the team's practice on Friday to protest against the defending champion's poor performance in the Brazilian league.

Santos continues to struggle

Sao Paulo:

Dozens of Santos fans broke through security and interrupted the team's practice on Friday to protest against the defending champion's poor performance in the Brazilian league.The fans wanted to talk to players and demand they show more determination in the team's final six matches of the season, club spokesman Juan Reol said.Blasting firecrackers into the air and chanting loudly, the fans got past security guards and invaded the team's training facility just minutes after players had started practicing."They were not happy with the team's campaign and wanted to discuss it with the players,'' Reol said. "They talked peacefully for several minutes and everything was under control.''A few fans and some of the players met for nearly two hours after practice to talk about the team's situation, but details of what was discussed were not disclosed.Barely in contentionSantos is seventh in the 22-team standings, out of the title race and barely in contention for one of the Copa Libertadores berths available to the top four clubs at the end of the competition.The club made famous by Pele in the late 1960s has lost its last two league matches. It has 55 points - 16 behind leader Corinthians and six off fourth-place Goias.Led by striker Robinho, now a Real Madrid player, Santos won the league in 2002 and '04, and finished second in '03.Santos plays rival Corinthians on Sunday in their first encounter since a disputed match on October 13. The game was one of 11 matches annulled by Brazil's Superior Tribunal of Sports Justice because of a referee's admission of accepting bribes to fix games.Santos, which had won the original match 4-2, lost 3-2 after several disputed calls by referee Cleber Wellington Abade, including a match-winning penalty in the 86th minute.Several Santos fans invaded the field during that match, and the team was forced to play three home games in an empty stadium.Santos is one of the clubs that appealed the annulment of the fixed matches, and was threatening to ask FIFA to reverse the sports tribunal's decision. The team alleges its original match against Corinthians was not contaminated and did not have to be replayed. (AP)



Topics : Football
Related Articles
FIFA Parts With Head of Security, Match-Fixing Cases
FIFA Parts With Head of Security, Match-Fixing Cases
Colombia Plane Crash: Sudamericana Title Given to Chapecoense
Colombia Plane Crash: Sudamericana Title Given to Chapecoense
Sergio Aguero's Four-Match Ban Confirmed
Sergio Aguero's Four-Match Ban Confirmed
Show Comments
Advertisement