FIFA bans 4 Uruguay players for disorder at World Cup

ZURICH (AP) — FIFA banned Uruguay players Fernando Muslera and José María Giménez for four games each on Friday for aggressively confronting match officials when the team was eliminated from the World Cup last month.

Veterans Edinson Cavani and Diego Godín must also serve one-game bans when Uruguay next plays, FIFA said in disciplinary verdicts.

The players must all carry out community service on a soccer project and pay fines of up to 20,000 Swiss francs ($21,600), FIFA said.

Disorder flared when Uruguay failed to advance to the round of 16 in Qatar despite beating Ghana 2-0 in its final group-stage game on Dec. 2.

The Uruguayan soccer federation was also fined 50,000 Swiss francs ($54,000) and must close some of its stadium for one home game.

FIFA disciplinary judges ruled the federation “was responsible for the discriminatory behavior of its supporters as well as for the misconduct, offensive behavior and violation of the principles of fair play” by players.

Uruguay players confronted German referee Daniel Siebert after the final whistle at Al Janoub Stadium.

They believed Uruguay should been awarded a penalty kick in stoppage time. One more goal scored would have sent Uruguay to the round of 16 instead of South Korea.

South Korea advanced instead and created one of the most memorable images of the World Cup.

As Uruguay and Ghana played out stoppage time across the city in Doha, South Korean players and staff gathered in the center circle after their 2-1 win over Portugal to watch on cellphones as their rivals played and waited to discover who would advance as runner-up in Group H.

Cavani, Godín and goalkeeper Muslera were each playing at their fourth World Cup and Giménez was at his third.

Uruguay has not yet announced its opponents for games in the late March international break.


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