James Rodriguez slams reports of bust-up in Colombia dressing room after Uruguay defeat

James Rodriguez Colombia 2020
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The Everton midfielder has publicly addressed rumours that he was involved in a physical confrontation with his international team-mates last week

James Rodriguez has spoken out amid reports of a bust-up in the Colombia dressing room after their World Cup qualifying defeat to Uruguay.

Colombia suffered a major blow in their bid to qualify for Qatar 2022 after being thrashed 3-0 by Uruguay at Estadio Metropolitano Roberto Melendez last Friday.

Edinson Cavani fired home the opening goal of the game with just five minutes on the clock, and Luis Suarez doubled the visitors' account via the penalty spot early in the second period.

Darwin Nunez rounded off the scoring when his thunderous long-range strike went flying past David Ospina in the 73rd minute, with Colombia's misery compounded when Yerry Mina was shown a red card in stoppage time.

It has been reported that tensions within Carlos Queiroz's squad boiled over after the final whistle, leading to a physical confrontation behind the scenes which James was allegedly at the centre of.

The Everton midfielder vehemently denies those claims, however, and has threatened to take legal action against the publications responsible for defaming his character.

"To the public opinion, the media and fans in general that I DISMISS all kinds of supposed information alluding to mistreatment, aggression, disputes or all kinds of controversy raised between players and in which I am mentioned as the protagonist, After the World Cup qualifying commitments that took place on November 13 and 17, 2020," James said in an official statement on Thursday.

"What happened on the court and the unfortunate results have not prospered beyond what the game represents. Both in the dressing room and in my personal life, I maintain excellent and respectful relationships with each of my teammates from the Colombian National Team.

"The moment is complex from the sporting point of view, we players are the first to recognise our responsibility. However, as a group we remain united and with the intact dream of qualifying for the World Cup in Qatar, something for which we will work even harder.

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"For the above, we need to clear all kinds of doubts about what harmony and the environment in the dressing room represent, which although it is affected from the soul has never passed into conflict between us its members.

"Finally, I ask everyone not to fall further into the misinformation of these slanders. Those responsible and creators of these false stories only intend to foment discord and chaos by affecting my name, so I will proceed in law where necessary."

Colombia did nothing to ease speculation of disharmony in the dressing room after losing 6-1 to Ecuador on Tuesday following their Uruguay defeat. 

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