Liverpool punishment expected as stars caught in training ground brawl
Liverpool and Porto are waiting to hear if they will face disciplinary proceedings after ugly scenes marred the end of a UEFA Youth League meeting between their Under-19s teams on Wednesday.
The two squads clashed on the pitch after the Reds had sealed passage to the quarter-finals of the prestigious youth tournament courtesy of a 6-5 penalty shootout victory following a 1-1 draw at their Kirkby training ground.
Three red cards were shown after the melee was broken up, with Liverpool striker Lewis Koumas and Porto pair Umaro Cande and Goncalo Ribeiro the recipients.
Koumas now stands to be suspended for his side’s last-eight tie, which will see them head to Portugal to face Sporting Lisbon later this month.
However, Football Insider understands that it is unlikely that the punishments will end there, with UEFA set to investigate the brawl further.
European football’s governing body are awaiting a report from Icelandic referee Helgi Mikael Jonasson before deciding whether to open proceedings.
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But that seems the most likely outcome, with the Reds already vowing to cooperate with any investigation.
Liverpool youth coach Barry Lewtas also expressed regret over the post-match skirmishes that followed a crucial win for his team speaking after full-time.
“Whether there was a little bit of antagonising I don’t know,” he said. “It would be really unfair for me to comment. It was a shame the way it went. I could sense from the bench that a few things went against them (Porto) it could go a certain way.
“Sometimes you have 30-odd young boys there and it can spill over. It was a bit disappointing because it looked like the playground a little bit towards the end. And I don’t think our performance replicated that.
“We spoke about the way they behave on the way across [from the pitch to the changing rooms]. I think once you do settle down and the emotion comes out, you can behave in a certain way. I think the lads have calmed down and gone in.
“Obviously, I saw what was happening and it wasn’t the best scenes but at the same time, I don’t know what happened. And I think sometimes when players do run and celebrate at the end of a penalty shootout players can come together.”
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