PANAMA CITY (Reuters) - Costa Rica coach Paulo Wanchope became involved in a brawl with an identified person during an Olympic qualifier against Panama on Tuesday night.
Wanchope, who was observing the match between the respective countries’ under-23 teams, was shown in video footage to retaliate after being pushed by the man. It was not clear if the man, who was wearing a black shirt and was considerably shorter than Wanchope, was a member of the public or a steward.
Footage showed that, at the end of the game, Wanchope opened a gate leading down to the pitch and was pushed from behind by the man. Wanchope turned around and pushed him back. The man kicked the coach in the thigh and then threw some punches at him, while Wanchope tried to wrestle him onto some plastic seats.
Several security guards then intervened to pull the men apart. The match ended 0-0. So far the Costa Rican federation has not commented on the incident.
Former Derby County, West Ham United, Manchester City and Malaga player Wanchope was named as Costa Rica coach in February. He was previously assistant to Jorge Luis Pinto when Costa Rica reached the quarter-finals at the World Cup.
Writing by Brian Homewood in Berne; editing by Amlan Chakraborty