NEW YORK – The Columbus Crew and their fans may have felt like they were victimized in Torreon, Mexico on Tuesday night when Andy Iro’s goal was not allowed to stand by Panamanian referee Luis Rodriguez in the 22nd minute. They wound up losing the CONCACAF Champions League match to Santos 1-0.
Controversy ensued in the confusion, as both clubs campaigned with the referees for the call. But on Wednesday morning came the official word from CONCACAF on what actually transpired at the Estadio Corona.
After receiving treatment on the sideline, Crew forward Emilio Renteria raced back onto the field, received the ball on a free kick and delivered the cross that was headed home by Iro.
According to the official referee post-match report, Renteria entered the field without permission and was eventually booked for that infraction. Law No. 3 from the Laws of the Game (page 60) says that when a player comes onto the field without permission, the game is stopped and the opposing team [Santos] receives an indirect kick.
Highlights show that Renteria is hesitant at first when he rejoins the fray. He even thinks twice and makes a move to return to the sidelines before he receives some indication that convinces him to stay on. However, according to the Laws of the Game, the fourth official - Ricardo Arrellano of Mexico, in this case - is not authorized to allow a player to re-enter a match.