Darwin Nunez: Liverpool star appears to clash with Colombia fans in shocking Copa America brawl

Shocking scenes: Darwin Nunez was among the Uruguay players who appeared to confront Colombia fans in the stands (Getty Images)
Shocking scenes: Darwin Nunez was among the Uruguay players who appeared to confront Colombia fans in the stands (Getty Images)

CONMEBOL are investigating after Uruguay players including Liverpool’s Darwin Nunez appeared to clash with Colombia fans in shocking scenes witnessed at the Copa America tournament in the United States overnight.

Footage that circulated widely on social media after Wednesday night’s second semi-final tie in Charlotte, North Carolina appeared to show some of Uruguay’s players climbing into the stands at Bank of America Stadium and confronting Colombian supporters.

That number appeared to include Liverpool striker Nunez, who could be seen in videos climbing up over a barrier and into the stands and then appearing to exchange punches in ugly clashes with Colombian fans after crowd disorder had reportedly broken out near to where the families of the Uruguayan players were situated, with drinks also thrown.

Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo and Uruguay captain Jose Maria Gimenez, of Atletico Madrid, were among the other players who appeared to be caught up in the incident.

Such a brawl was strongly condemned by CONMEBOL, the main governing body of football in South America, who are now investigating.

“CONMEBOL strongly condemns any act of violence that affects football,” their statement read. “Our work is based on the conviction that football connects us and unites us, through its positive values.

“There is no place for intolerance and violence on and off the field. We invite everyone in the remaining days to pour all their passion into cheering on their teams and having an unforgettable party.”

Gimenez said the Uruguay players had acted to defend their families after blaming the shocking scenes on a small number of Colombian fans that he claimed had too much to drink.

“Let me say something before they cut you off because they won't let us speak into the microphone, they don't want me to say anything about what's going on but this is a disaster,” Gimenez said in a television interview.

“Please be careful, our families are in the stands, there are little newborn babies. It was a disaster; there was no police and we had to defend our families.

“This is the fault of two or three people who had a few too many drinks and don't know how to drink.”

Uruguayan Football Association president Ignacio Alonso also insisted that players including Nunez had reacted “instinctively” in order to defend their loved ones in the crowd.

Colombia won the game 1-0 thanks to a first-half header from Crystal Palace midfielder Jefferson Lerma, setting up a final date against Lionel Messi and Argentina at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami on Sunday night. Right-back Daniel Munoz, also of Palace, was sent off for Colombia early on in a feisty encounter but they still prevailed with 10 men.

Argentina booked their own spot in this weekend’s showpiece with a 2-0 victory over Canada in New Jersey on Tuesday night, with Messi on the scoresheet alongside Manchester City striker Julian Alvarez at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford.