Benfica’s match against Slavia Prague abandoned after injured player discovers blood in injured teammate’s elbow

SOCHI, Russia — Benfica’s Champions League match against Slavia Prague was abandoned after a match report was found on a bench covered in blood following an elbow by Benfica defender Bruno Alves.

The referee chose to abandon the match after six minutes on Thursday because Slavia players ran back to the bench and desperately tried to stop the blood from spreading when their goalkeeper hit the bench. The match report was found on the bench along with blood on the tunnel, though none on the pitch.

Slavia Czech Republic coach Karolina Oblak told the media that after a strong elbow in the chest by Alves, she walked to the bench with her players.

“My goal was to try to stop it,” Oblak said. “In a match as important as this, the referee and the coach have to stop it.”

Benfica captain Luisao and defender David Luiz were ejected from the match in a fourth minute red card shown to Alves.

An hour later, Almog Cohen, a Benfica forward, appeared to be on the verge of tears as the match was abandoned.

Alfredo Di Stefano

Benfica spokesman Julian Martínez said the referee and the Benfica medical staff decided to abandon the match immediately, without waiting for an explanation from either side.

“It appears both parties did not understand their roles,” Martínez said. “Everyone was saying that Benfica should not allow its team to be crushed, while Slavia ran back to try to change its mind.”

Benfica finished with 10 men while Slavia Prague, which hosts Wolfsburg in a match on Tuesday, fielded a full complement of substitutes.

Benfica striker Jonas left the field limping while the stoppage was in progress, but did not appear to be seriously injured.

Slavia Czech Republic starting midfielders Tomas Necid and Zdenek Pospech were ejected after separate yellow card penalties in the 53rd minute.

Benfica, the 2009 European champions, had beaten Slavia Prague 5-1 in the Europa League on Sept. 2.

European Champions League Match abandoned by six opposition players after bloody altercation

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