The Law Just Caught Up with the Mexico Fan Accused of Injuring an American Player During Championship Game


A Mexican fan accused of throwing objects during Sunday’s rowdy Nations League soccer final has been arrested and banned from attending future events at Empower Field at Mile High in Denver.

The stadium management company said the man was identified via security footage after U.S. player Giovanni Reyna was struck in the face with an object, The Denver Post reported.

Four other people were arrested for trespassing during the game, which the U.S. won 3-2 against Mexico.

“While the night showcased Denver as a world-class soccer destination and Empower Field at Mile High as a premiere sports and entertainment venue, the actions of a few patrons unfortunately took away from a memorable event,” the stadium management company said in a statement.

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Other fans were ejected for violating the fan code of conduct, stadium officials said.

Mexico was leading the game when Christian Pulisic was pulled down by Mexico’s Carlos Salcedo, leading to the game-changing chain of events.

Referee John Pitti called a penalty after a video review, during which Mexico coach Gerardo Martino touched an official and received a red card and was kicked out of the game.

Pulisic scored what would be the game-winner on his ensuing penalty kick.

Irate Mexican fans pelted the American players with water bottles and cups while the American team celebrated, according to ESPN.

One of the objects hit Reyna, who had scored the U.S. team’s first goal, directly in the face.

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“Total lack of respect for what’s happening on the field and all effort that both teams are putting into the game,” U.S. team manager Gregg Berhalter said.

“I think he’s going to be OK, but he did take something to the head, and it could have been a lot worse.”

Mexican fans also managed to hit one of their own players in the fusillade of objects.

“Empower Field at Mile High is fully committed to providing a safe, welcoming and inclusive environment for all participants and fans,” the stadium management company said.

“Our fan code of conduct will continue to be strictly enforced to ensure a positive experience for everyone.”

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Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. A University of Oregon graduate, Erin has conducted research in data journalism and contributed to various publications as a writer and editor.
Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. She grew up in San Diego, California, proceeding to attend the University of Oregon and graduate with honors holding a degree in journalism. During her time in Oregon, Erin was an associate editor for Ethos Magazine and a freelance writer for Eugene Magazine. She has conducted research in data journalism, which has been published in the book “Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future.” Erin is an avid runner with a heart for encouraging young girls and has served as a coach for the organization Girls on the Run. As a writer and editor, Erin strives to promote social dialogue and tell the story of those around her.
Tucson, Arizona
Graduated with Honors
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, University of Oregon
Books Written
Contributor for Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future
Prescott, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, French
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Health, Entertainment, Faith