BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Racing Club midfielder Giovanni Moreno turned up for practice flanked by police and accompanied by the president of the players union on Wednesday.
Moreno was threatened at gunpoint on Tuesday by hooligans — known in Argentina as “barrasbravas'” — who stuck a pistol into his knee and promised to “blow off” his leg unless he played better for the struggling first-division team, regarded as one of the “big five” in the local game.
Fan-related violence is endemic in Argentine soccer. It has escalated in recent weeks with threats against players and heads of several clubs.
The nonprofit group “Let’s Save Football,” says at least six people have died in the last six months in soccer-related violence. The group says the Argentine Football Association has done little to stem the violence.