The Upshot

Bolivian president delivers strong message on soccer field

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Politics may indeed be a full-contact sport, but it's rare to see an actual display of knee-to-groin animus among political rivals.

Still, that's just what happened in Bolivia over this past weekend. On Sunday, Bolivian President Evo Morales was playing on a soccer squad opposite a team captained by one of his political foes, Luis Revilla, the mayor of La Paz. And in the thick of the action, Morales delivered what one Bolivian media outlet described as a knee to the "testicular zone" to a player on Revilla's team named Daniel Gustavo Cartagena. Morales was allegedly acting in retaliation for a hard foul Cartagena inflicted on him earlier in the match. Cartagena collapsed in agony after the kick, and the game ended in a 4-4 tie.  You can watch a video report by a Bolivian media outlet below:

As with many political rivalries, this one has a back story. La Paz Mayor Revilla is reportedly a onetime political ally of Morales. The Bolivian president, meanwhile, is a former llama herder, farmer and union leader who is not exactly known for his serene temperament. And his tough-guy antics aren't limited to the soccer field: Earlier this year he called President Obama a liar. Even though Obama is a confirmed health nut who often enjoys pickup basketball games, he should probably think twice about any invitation from Morales to take up soccer, all things considered.

(Photo: Getty)

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