(WFI) As Chile knock defending champions Spain out of the tournament with a
stunning victory in Rio, military police arrest 85 ticketless Chilean
fans who went on the rampage at the Maracana media centre.
Two first-half strikes by Vargas and Aranguiz ended the holders’ disastrous campaign; they were humiliated 5-1 by the Netherlands in Salvador on Friday.
But the build-up to the much-anticipated match was tarnished when around 100 fans broke through a security cordon at the Maracana stadium less than one hour before kick-off. They vandalised the media centre as they sought in vain to gain access to the stadium seats.
To the astonishment of dozens of journalists working in the media room, the group of Chilean fans, sporting the red jerseys of their team, reportedly knocked down two temporary walls and sent lockers flying as they attempted to get into the stadium where a capacity crowd of 74,000 fans was preparing to watch the game.
Security officials eventually seized control of the situation, forcing the men to sit on the ground before they were escorted off the stadium site and handed over to police.
The incident represents the biggest
security breach of the World Cup. FIFA president Sepp Blatter and secretary general Jerome Valcke were among those in the hospitality boxes at the Maracana.
FIFA and the Brazil 2014 organising committee put out a statement soon after the Chilean media centre invasion.
“Ahead of the Spain-Chile match at the Maracana, a group of individuals without tickets violently forced entry into the stadium, breaking fences and overrunning security,” it said.
“They were contained by the security and did not make it to the seats. The situation was brought under control quickly and at least 85 intruders were detained according to the military police of Rio de Janeiro.”
The statement added: “The organisers of the FIFA World Cup condemn these acts of violence and we will communicate further information and measures to be taken in due course.”
By INSIDER editor Mark Bisson
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