Uruguay players involved in brawl as ex-Leeds United coach Marcelo Bielsa's Copa America dreams shattered

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Uruguay will now take on Jesse Marsch’s Canada in the Copa America third place play-off

Marcelo Bielsa's hopes of leading Uruguay to Copa America glory were shattered in the early hours of Thursday morning. Uruguay lost 1-0 to Colombia in the semi-finals of the competition thanks to Jefferson Lerma's first half winner in Charlotte.

Bielsa's side had seen off Brazil to reach the last four of the competition and under his guidance, many believed Uruguay could go on to reach the final. However, the result means Colombia, who saw Daniel Munoz sent off in the game, will now progress to the final to take on Argentina, while Uruguay must make do with a third place play-off clash with Canada.

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That's a game that will mean very little in the grand scheme of things, but Leeds United fans will be keeping a keen eye on it as two of their former managers go head to head. Jesse Marsch is now in charge of Canada and probably managed to exceed expectations by taking the Canucks to the semi-finals.

He was the man that succeeded Bielsa at Elland Road and eyes will be on the Bank of America Stadium once more as the two coaches do battle. Uruguay will be the favourites for the clash, though, and Bielsa will be keen to end their tournament on a high after taking responsibility for their semi-final loss.

"Uruguay was clearly in a position to win this match if you look at the players each team has," the Argentinian said after the game. "I'm in charge of managing a team that, in my opinion, was stronger in terms of individuality, and we were unable to make the difference that I thought we were capable of creating.

"I take particular responsibility for not having established an advantage in the first half and taking advantage of the numerical superiority in the second, by having players capable of overcoming the opponent.

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"When a team that has fewer individuals wins, the coach who leads that team shows superiority over me, in this case."

He added: "I think that if we had tied the match there were elements to consider that the draw would have been fair, but it depends on the analyst. I'm honest with you, I would have preferred that the Colombian player not be sent off, because what happened after the sending off and the way Colombia played to maintain the result, for us meant a greater difficulty than what we had to face when there were eleven.

"Before, there were two teams playing, and in that process we created goal-scoring opportunities, and we received some chances due to some concession of ours."

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Unfortunately, the contest was marred by violence in the stands after the full-time whistle. Uruguay players, including Liverpool's Darwin Nunez, could be seen stepping into the crowd before being involved in an altercation with Colombia supporters after reports of violence in the players' family section of the stand. Footage showed Nunez being held back by Uruguay supporters.

"Obviously if someone is attacking your family you want to go and defend them but that doesn't justify the image that it created," Luis Suarez said after the game. "We had to protect our families that were there. What I could see there was a lot of family, a lot of children of my team-mates who were trapped and things were falling on them and you felt helpless."

The third place play-off clash between Bielsa’s Uruguay and Marsch’s Canada will kick off in the early hours on Sunday morning at 1am.