Costa Rica have 9 players suspended after U20 World Cup qualifying clash with US

July 1 – A mass brawl after the USA’s 2-0 win over Costa Rica at the Concacaf U20 Championships in Honduras earlier this week has resulted in bans for nine Costa Ricans and one American.

The quarter final clash between the two nations had a lot on the line, with a semi-final spot and qualification for the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Indonesia going to the winner.

The US are chasing their third straight Concacaf U-20 Championship and went through to the semi-finals with two goals from Paxton Aaronson in the fifth and 49th minutes.

The Costa Ricans, who missed a penalty and hit the post, vented their frustration after the match confronting US players in a series of incidents and causing a mass fight to break out.

Concacaf have now stepped in suspending nine Costa Rican players “for violent and unsportsmanlike conduct”.

In their statement Concacaf said:Having assessed all the evidence, the Committee has determined that the Costa Rican FA and a number of its players violated Competition Regulations and the FIFA Disciplinary Code.

“As a consequence of these rule breaches, and in accordance with the Competition Regulations, the Federation has been fined an undisclosed amount and the following players have been suspended for violent and unsportsmanlike conduct:

• Andrey Soto (No. 7): six match suspension
• Timothy Arias (No. 14): six match suspension
• Ricardo Pena (No. 6): three match suspension
• Creichel Perez (No. 8): three match suspension
• Doryan Rodriguez (No. 9): three match suspension
• Keral Rios (No. 13): three match suspension
• Bayron Mora (No. 18): three match suspension
• Johel Aleman (No. 19): three match suspension
• Enyel Escoe (No. 20): three match suspension”

The US also had one player suspended, Cade Cowell, for “violent and unsportsmanlike conduct”.

Concacaf said: “All suspensions must be served in the next official match of the men’s national team of the same age category. If the suspensions cannot be served in the same age category, then they will be transferred to the immediately higher category in men’s national team football.”

It was a dark moment in a tournament that has sprung surprises, in particular the shock exit of Mexico at the hands of the Dominican Republic who qualify for their first ever FIFA finals tournament, and the re-emergence of Guatemala as a force on the Concacaf stage.

The US now face hosts Honduras in the semis. Dominican Republic and Guatemala are in the other semi-final.

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