América coach Herrera claims staff assaulted by police in Toronto
Club América staff were assaulted by police in Toronto on Tuesday, claimed Miguel Herrera, but local authorities received no complaints.
Miguel Herrera claimed police assaulted Club América staff in Tuesday's CONCACAF Champions League semi-final against Toronto FC, but local law enforcement have received no complaints.
Giovinco penalty sparked problems
The América players were irked by the early awarding of a penalty in Sebastian Giovinco's favour, leading to an alleged altercation in the BMO Field tunnel at half-time.
Former Mexico coach Herrera asserts police were heavy-handed as they attempted to break up a clash between the two camps, with CONCACAF officials nearby. Toronto Police confirmed to Omnisport on Wednesday that no complaints relating to the purported incident have been reported.
"What I'm very annoyed about - and the CONCACAF people know it and I hope they report it - is the police were hitting my players," Herrera said. "And the CONCACAF officials saw it, so I want to see it reported.
"Because if they're going to use the police to attack the players when you think they're going to calm down the situation and calm us down, I hope the report comes out that the CONCACAF officials saw it.
"They hit [goalkeeper Agustin] Marchesin, they hit Bruno [Valdez, centre-back] and Giber [Becerra, fitness coach]. I think, if there's scuffling, we can calm ourselves down. That's what the security is for, to calm things down.
"But the security, it didn't intervene in this way. I saw the CONCACAF people there and I hope the report comes down. Because if not, it means CONCACAF is going to hide what happened at half-time when they saw it."
He added: "In Mexico, these things don't happen. There are moments where things heat up in a game and the police don't get involved to hit anyone."
Greg Vanney disputes version of events
Toronto head coach Greg Vanney questioned Herrera's version of events.
"I was front and centre, I saw everything, and I'm going to disagree with [Herrera] strongly. That's not what happened," Vanney said.
"One of their coaches took exception to the penalty and was having a go at Sebastian. Sebastian kept walking. Jonathan [Osorio] stepped in between the assistant coach and Sebastian.
"I told the coach and the head coach that his coach shouldn't be talking to our players and he needs to keep moving. The next thing, there was an elbow. It escalated from there."
Toronto went on to secure a 3-1 lead after the first leg in Canada, with Giovinco, Jozy Altidore and Ashtone Morgan on target in a thrilling contest.
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