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VIDEO: Costa Rica head coach Paulo Wanchope brawls with security guard at Panama football stadium

The short, winless era of Paulo “Busta-Chop” Wanchope as head of Costa Rica’s men’s football team has taken a strange and abrupt turn. On Tuesday night during an Under-23 pre-Olympics match between Costa Rica and Panama, Wanchope was involved in an ugly scuffle that could very well cost him his job.

According to Panamanian media, a stadium security guard told Wanchope that he could not enter the field towards the end of Costa Rica’s 0-0 tie with Panama, prompting Wanchope to become visibly upset. What followed is shown in the video above, as Wanchope is pushed into a child protecting the field. He then turns around and slaps a short, bald security guy.

Who fights back:

The security guard takes on the much taller Wanchope with an impressive flying kick. He then forces the head coach of Costa Rica’s “La Sele” to take a seat while the scuffle continues. Both men were then held back by more security guards and fans.

Wanchope, who is 0-4-5 as the head coach of Costa Rica’s men’s national team, should have known better than to lose his temper – after all, Costa Rica is known as a peaceful nation. Plus, Mexico’s now former head coach, Miguel Herrera, was sacked late last month for a fight with a reporter in a U.S. airport.

Also not helping is the fact that Wanchope has yet to establish the same credibility as a coach that he had as a player for La Sele. The 39-year-old coach took over for former manager Jorge Luis Pinto in February and has been unable to live up to expectations set by a historic World Cup run in Brazil last year.

See also: Costa Rica’s top 10 goals of all time

Contact Michael Krumholtz at

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Why did the security guard not let the national coach onto the pitch?

Did the security guard ask for the national coach’s credentials?

The security guard also seems to push the coach down the steps (or hits the coach in the head), as the coach forces the gate open and moves past him, and into the boy prompting a response slap from the coach. The security guard responded with kicks and closed fists. The security guard provoked and escalated a tense situation with his aggressive behavior. Hopefully he is held accountable for his actions. Especially since it appears that he lay hands on the coach first.

If the national coach was trying to advocate for Costa Rica by going down on the pitch what happened to the support of his country? Was there an investigation into this incident by the appropriate Costa Rican Sporting institution before the coach announced his resignation, and if not why not? Such processes are necessary to help avoid charges of improper behavior or violations of rights.

The national coach made mistakes and, at times, aggravated the situation. His resignation was swift; was resignation the only option of discipline?

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Mark Kahle

Hopefully he spends some time in a Panamanian jail for this. He is a poor representative for our nation and should be relieved of his position NOW.

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J-p A Maldonado

As they say in Argentina: “Que se joda, por boludo”.

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Let me point something:
Wanchope’s WHOLE era ahead of the CRCMNT is NOT 0-4-5, only as of 2015 (yeah pretty much as he was named as the trainer). However in the second half of 2014, when he was an interim, he managed to keep a 4-0-2, which makes a total 4-4-7, which still doesn’t seem to be good enough for a team that comes from being among the top-8 in the world’s biggest tournament.

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