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Argentine football player stabbed rivals with needles to win match
An Argentine fourth division player is likely to be sacked after he admitted poking strikers with a needle during his team's shock cup win over top tier Estudiantes.
Federico Allende, who plays for Sport Club Pacifico in the Federal B championship, said “in football, in order to win, you need to be clever”.
He said his behaviour was inspired by former a Argentine coach, who was reputed to have meted out similar treatment to opponents in his playing days.
This was a reference to Carlos Salvador Bilardo, the legendary Argentine manager who won the World Cup with Maradona in 1986.
The radio hosts jokingly asked if the player meant 'the water bottle'.
Brazilian defender Branco famously accused Bilardo's bench of having handed him a water bottle laced with a drug during their second round match in the 1990 World Cup.
But Allende said: "No, not the bottle. Needles."
He claimed he kept two needles hidden in his shinpads.
Allende was marking Estudiantes forward Juan Otero for most of the Copa Argentina match, which Sport won 3-2, and said that he nipped his rival several times.
"I had to turn to the great Bilardo," Allende said in a radio interview. "The poor guy (Otero), it did his head in. But what do you want me to do? We know we had to make the game dirty because top division players don't like it.
"He must have hated me, but that's football."
Otero confirmed that he was poked four times and that he told the referee, who took no action. "I know it was the game of his life, but it's still just a football match," he said.
“I changed position because he poked me at every stoppage. "I told the referee but he didn't believe me. I told the linesman as well and he just smiled.
Pacifico President Hector Moncada said Allende's behaviour had overshadowed his team's famous win and he would recommend sacking the player.
"We are shocked; it's put a dampener on the team's work," he said.