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Alex Prus Apologizes For Leo Gonzalez Red Card

During last Saturday’s match against Chivas USA, referee Alex Prus gave Seattle defender Leo Gonzalez a straight red card, sending Gonzalez off for the remainder of the match and causing him to miss at least the next MLS game.

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It was not only Sounders fans who were outraged at the call against Gonzalez. During added time, Gonzalez had control of the ball and worked to keep Mariano Trujillo from gaining possession. Gonzalez gave a little shove to Trujillo, who responded with a straight slap to Gonzalez’s face—which is a red card by the rules. The scuffle quickly turned to handbags, with one of the Chivas’ coaches even charging at Osvaldo Alonso.

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After a discussion with his team, head referee Prus showed a red card first to Trujillo, then—to the shock of all watching—to Gonzalez. Leo may have deserved a yellow, but certainly not a red.

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Today, via his twitter account, Prus apologized, showing a bit of humility, which most refs seem to be lacking. He confessed that after reviewing the tape, Gonzalez did not deserve the red card. Prus had been told by the assistant referee that Gonzalez had made above-the-shoulder contact on Trujillo (which would be a red card) but it was clear on the replay that he did not.

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Even though Prus relied on information from an assistant, he still takes full responsibility for the call. It is uncertain whether Gonzalez’s red will be rescinded and if he will be allowed to play against the Chicago Fire on August 28.