Uruguayan footballer Alvaro Pereira, who plays for Argentina’s Estudiantes de La Plata, has complained of being treated like a “criminal” by the media for a brawl that broke out during a recent friendly match.

“They are treating me like a criminal or like a person who attempted to commit murder,” said the Uruguay international here on Tuesday, reports Xinhua.

“This was not planned,” said the 30-year-old player who participated in the incident which included a free-for-all fight between players from Estudiantes and Gimnasia.

Pereira was sent off after a brutal kick against the opposition’s defender Facundo Oreja.

The player was unexpectedly transferred on loan to Spain’s Getafe for six months earlier on Monday.

“We all regret what happened. This will be a lesson,” Pereira said, even though he asked the authorities “not to overreact (with the punishments) and to make them fair.”

Pereira played for Uruguay in the 2010 and 2014 World Cup.

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