In interviews with local media, referee Dalma Magali Cortadi says she fouls Garmense player Cristian Tirone – who a police source and a Garmense source told CNN was the aggressor – who then proceeded to verbally abuse her.
As a result, Cortadi says she decided to show Tirone a red card, at which point he ran behind Cortadi and hit her on the back of the head, knocking her to the ground.
In video footage of the incident, Tirone then had to be forcibly removed from Cortadi by two of his officials, before being escorted off the pitch by several police officers.
Following the attack, Cortadi had to be taken to a local hospital and, once released, she filed a criminal complaint against Tirone.
CNN has attempted to contact Tirone through the police, but so far without success.
The police source told CNN that Tirone is being held at a police station in De La Gama, the town where the attack took place. The player is incommunicado, the source said, and is expected to be transferred to the prosecution to make his statement.
After giving his statement, it will be determined whether or not he is detained and what charges will be brought against him, the police source told CNN.
In a statement, the Argentine Football Association (AFA) said: “The AFA repudiates and condemns the actions of player Cristian Tirone (Dep. Garmense) towards referee Dalma Cortadi, who suffered physical abuse during of the second half of the match.
“This Chamber, in collaboration with the Federal Council, will look into the matter and will accompany the judge throughout the process, reinforcing the instructions on this type of behavior that our association will not tolerate.
“It should be noted that the incident will be transferred to the disciplinary tribunal to apply the corresponding sanction to the player and that these aberrant events will not be repeated in any other of our football stadiums. Likewise, the Department of Equity and Gender , led by Dr. Paula Ojeda, is in constant dialogue with the victim and is fully available.”
In a statement, Tirone club Garmense said it “expresses its energetic rejection” of the attack.
“The institution expresses its solidarity with the assaulted official, apologizes, makes itself available to her and undertakes to continue to work to eradicate violence in all its forms and to train athletes with values such as: discipline , camaraderie, commitment and, above all, respect and tolerance,” the statement added.