Football violence in South America reared its ugly head this week after violent clashes in Argentina and with the killing of a football official in Colombia. The country which has been hit by years of civil war and has one of the highest rates of murder and kidnappings, had managed to shake off some of its poor image after successfully staging the Copa America last year. But this is a new setback. Soccer violence was at its worst in Argentina in a match involving Chacarita and Boca Juniors. Chacarita fans clashed with police as they were banned from bringing banners into the field. That was on Sunday. A day later, in northern Bogota, 46-year-old Cesar Villegas, a director of the club Santa Fe de Bogoto, was shot seven times by two men on a motorbike. Villegas was taken to a nearby clinic where he later died. The murder comes at a time when South American clubs have expressed fears over security when playing Copa Libertadores matches in Colombia. Meanwhile, Venezuela has announced that it will not send a team to the South American Games to be held in Colombia from April 6 to 16. Colombia has a history of soccer-related violence, the most infamous being the 1994 killing of international Andres Escobar in Medellin after he scored an own goal in the World Cup finals in the United States.
Topics : Football