Greece bench boss plays race card

Greece's coach Fernando Santos gestures in front of fourth official Nawaf Shukralla during their...

Greece's coach Fernando Santos gestures in front of fourth official Nawaf Shukralla during their World Cup game against Costa Rica at the Pernambuco arena in Recife, Brazil on Sunday, June 29, 2014. (Tony Gentile/Reuters)

KURTIS LARSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:41 PM ET

RECIFE, BRAZIL - Australian referee Benjamin Williams blew his whistle, then pointed to the tunnel at the end of extra-time.

When Greece manager Fernando Santos refused to leave the pitch, Williams gestured with even more force a second time, sending Santos to the showers -- or to have a smoke.

Either way, Santos wasn't around to watch his side fall to Costa Rica on penalty kicks Sunday night at Arena Pernambuco.

He told reporters after the match that he watched the spot kicks from a TV in the bowels of the venue.

He then explained why the referee dismissed him.

"When the match ended, we were all going onto the pitch to talk to the players," Santos said. "The referee said we couldn't go on. But Costa Rica was all on the pitch. Everyone of Costa Rica was on the pitch (helping their players). That's not right. That's a double criteria.

"When the match finished, the same thing happened. So I said, 'Why, is it because I look different? Is it because I'm Portuguese?'"

First lesson in referee relations: Don't accuse a match official of racism.

That wasn't the only incident involving Greece's bench Sunday night.

Minutes before the Europeans found a late equalizer, their entire bench was up and yelling at the Costa Rican federation for an unknown reason.

When Sokratis Papastathopoulos forced extra time, the two benches had to be separated by a pair of officials.


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