Andre Santos is well acquainted with receiving criticism after games following some of the questionable performances he turned in for Arsenal. But the Brazilian international will have experienced nothing quite like the reaction he received on Sunday.
According to local media reports via Andrew Downie of the Mail Online, Santos was punched and kicked as he left the ground in Porto Alegre. The angry reaction of the supporters prompted the former Gunner to take shelter in a van that was waiting to pick him up after the game, per Downie.
The Rio de Janeiro team lost 4-0 against Internacional, a result that leaves them bottom of the Brazilian first division. Naturally, the Flamengo faithful were unhappy following the game, but things soon turned unsavoury.
Afterwards, Flamengo manager Ney Franco was quick to condemn the offenders, per The Hindu. "This citizen has to be arrested" said the coach. "I hope that the police at the stadium are taking the appropriate measures."
Here's a look at some Flamengo supporters chanting “team without shame!” after the 4-0 loss, courtesy of ESPN New York’s Ethan Donaldson:
Flamengo are enduring a disastrous campaign, and despite being one of the most well-established club sides in Brazil, they’re currently rooted to the bottom of the league having taken just seven points from their first 11 games of the season.
While Santos didn’t cover himself in glory during the match, it seems as though he may have been made a scapegoat by the Flamengo fans as they look to wrap their head around yet another poor performance. Internacional are a very capable side, and when the Rio club’s Chicao got himself sent off after 19 minutes, it was also going to be a struggle for the bottom club.
Santos is obviously having a tough time and while his career seems to be stalling, this kind of behaviour from supporters is completely unjustifiable.
It’s easy to single out players for criticism in times of turmoil, but the whole club needs to be united if they’re to get out of this awful predicament they currently find themselves in. Attacking the players will only serve to create a toxic atmosphere around the club and merely hamper the performances of the Flamengo players even further.