Chile's Gonzalo Jara banned for remainder of Copa America
SANTIAGO, Chile -- Chilean defender Gonzalo Jara has been banned from the remainder of the Copa America for provoking Uruguay's Edinson Cavani in a quarterfinal match.
The three-game ban handed down Sunday by South America's governing body rules out Jara from Monday's semifinal against Peru.
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Jara came up behind Cavani in Wednesday's match and pushed his finger into Cavani's backside. Cavani reacted and raised his hand toward Jara's head, with the Chilean feigning an injury and collapsing on the pitch.
The match referee missed Jara's gesture and sent off Cavani. Chile defeated Uruguay 1-0 to advance.
It wasn't the first time Jara was seen provoking another player. In 2013, Uruguay star striker Luis Suarez was sent off from a World Cup qualifier for punching Jara in the face after a similar provocation from the Chilean.
Jara has been an important player in Chile's defence and a suspension could be costly for the hosts, who are trying to win the South American tournament for the first time.
Following the incident, Jara's club, Mainz, announced they were prepared to let him leave this summer.
The Bundesliga club's sporting director Christian Heidel told Bild: "We do not tolerate that. What makes me more angry than the prod, however, is what happens after. There is nothing I hate more than theatrics.
"He knows that if an offer comes in, he can go."
Information from The Associated Press and PA Sport was used in this report.