Brazil official suspended over Chile tunnel clash
RIO DE JANEIRO
RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Brazil's senior press official has been given a one-match ban for his role in a flare-up in the tunnel at halftime during the World Cup last-16 match against Chile on Saturday as the dispute continued to rumble on Monday.
"He has been suspended for one match," a FIFA spokeswoman said when asked for an update on the case involving Brazil spokesman Rodrigo Paiva. He has been accused by one of Chile's players of punching him in the face.
The spokeswoman said the punishment was automatically applied after Paiva was sent off by the match referee. The case is being considered by the organisation's Disciplinary Committee which could hit Paiva with a longer ban.
Paiva said after the match, which Brazil won on penalties, that there was a scuffle with Chile striker Mauricio Pinilla at halftime and that he shoved him in self-defence.
Pinilla said Paiva's punishment should be much harsher.
"I demand that FIFA give Rodrigo Paiva an exemplary punishment just like the one imposed on my colleague (Uruguay striker) Suarez…!!! This is even more serious.! There are images,” Pinilla tweeted on his official account @pinigol51.
Suarez was hit with a nine-game suspension from playing competitive matches for Uruguay and a four-month ban from any football-related activity for biting an opponent during the World Cup.
Paiva issued his own statement later on Monday, saying the FIFA inquiry had received "proof of reprehensible behaviour by members of the Chilean delegation that will reveal the truth of the matter."
(Reporting by William Schomberg in Rio de Janeiro, Alexandra Ulmer in Buenos Aires and Eduardo Simoes in Sao Paulo,; editing by Ed Osmond)
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