After 48-year-old César Flores sent off the player for hitting an opponent on Sunday, the player went off the pitch, grabbed a gun from his bag, came back on the field, and shot the referee three times—in the head, chest, and neck. Another player, 25-year-old Walter Zárate, was also shot in the chest, but is recovering in hospital.
Argentine football has long been plagued by violence driven by the gangs who control the game. In 2013, the Argentine NGO Save Football reported that over 70 people had been killed in soccer-related violence since 2000. Violence against referees is also not uncommon: Last June a match was called off after a player punched a referee into unconsciousness after being yellow-carded.