- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 6, 2016

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) - Argentine football referees have called off a threatened strike for this weekend that was jeopardizing the country’s ‘superclasico’ between Buenos Aires rivals River Plate and Boca Juniors on Sunday.

Referees had threatened the strike following a brutal attack on a match official after he did not award a penalty in a key regional match last Sunday.

The labor ministry on Tuesday ordered the strike called off and instead ordered mandatory negotiations between the referees’ representatives and the sport’s officials.

The violence broke out Sunday when referee Claudio Elichiri waved away penalty claims by home team Sarmiento during a decisive regional league game against Sansinena.

Sansinena then scored a goal right away, taking a 2-1 lead. Irate fans invaded the field and the referee sent off several protesting Sarmiento players and suspended the game, enraging local fans and players.

Elichiri was besieged by fans and later told local radio he suffered a cut under his left eye that required stitches, as well as several bruises, but escaped worse injuries as he was protected by some Sarmiento players.

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