Norwegian club Bodo/Glimt on Friday decided to file a police report against an AS Roma assistant coach and challenged claims that their coach was the aggressor in a scuffle after Thursday’s Europa Conference League game.
Following a 2-1 home win for Bodo/Glimt in the quarter-final first leg, tensions reached boiling point, resulting in an altercation between the home side’s coach Kjetil Knutsen and Roma goalkeeping coach Nuno Santos.
The Norwegians had already inflicted a stunning 6-1 defeat on Jose Mourinho’s Roma in the group stage in October.
European football’s governing body UEFA on Friday said it had opened a disciplinary investigation “regarding reported incidents which allegedly occurred” at the end of the game.
Speaking in an interview after the match, Roma captain Lorenzo Pellegrini said Knutsen attacked Santos, calling it “an insult to the competition”.
But on Friday, Bodo/Glimt accused Roma of “bombarding media with falsehoods”, and instead argued that Knutsen was the one being attacked.
According to managing director Frode Thomassen the club saw “no other choice than to report Nuno Santos to police based on the physical assault on Kjetil Knutsen”.
“This is a systematic provocation, manipulation and finally an exercise of physical violence,” Thomassen said in a statement.
The club also said it had seen a video of the event that shows the attack, and demanded “that the public gets access to the video that UEFA has”.
According to Knutsen’s account, Santos waited outside the coaching area and harassed Knutsen verbally and by making gestures.
“Everything culminated in a physical attack on me in the player tunnel,” Knutsen said in the statement.
“He grabbed me by the neck and pushed me into the wall. It is only natural that I then had to defend myself,” he added.
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