24 Oct 2014

Robert Pires 'beaten' and 'punched in the face' by opposition coach in India

Robert Pires was allegedly 'beaten' and 'punched in the face' by an opposition coach during a half-time altercation in the Indian Super League.

Brazilian great and FC Goa boss Zico says Pires told him he was hit by Atletico de Kolkata coach Antonio Lopez Habas in the tunnel as the teams left for the half-time break during Thursday's game.

The ISL said on Friday it is looking into the allegations. 'Both teams have written to the ISL (Indian Super League) and the incident has been referred to the regulatory commissioner,' an ISL spokesperson said.
'The other thing that happened which is more serious is that one of our players said that he was beaten by the coach of the other team,' Zico said after the match.

'Pires said he was punched in the face by the Atletico coach and it is very shameful.

'I am telling you what my players told me and I didn't see that myself but I don't think that Pires will lie and say something that didn't happen.'
Kolkata team co-owner Utsav Parekh said: 'Look, none of us was present on the spot when the alleged incident took place.
'We are writing to the ISL about it and we expect them to investigate the matter and come out with the truth.

'CCTV footage is available and so it will not be very difficult to establish the truth. Whatever the incident, one can find that out from the CCTV footage.'
Former Arsenal defender Andre Santos gave the hosts the lead in the first half before Cavin Lobo scored twice to give Kolkata, who are co-owned by Spanish champions Atletico Madrid, a 2-1 win in the ill-tempered match in which seven players were shown yellow cards.

Kolkata lead the table with 10 points, having won three of their four matches in the eight-team competition.

Credit: Sudipo Ganguly/SportsMail

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