Angel Di Maria was substituted in the midst of the Paris St-Germain v Nantes match on Sunday due to news that his family were present during in a “extremely violent” robbery at his home.
It was shortly after the 60th minute that sporting director Leandro Paredes signaled to PSG manager Mauricio Pochettino and communicated the news to him in the stands, at which point Pochettino promptly took Di Maria off of the pitch.
Both the manager and Di Maria disappeared down the tunnel but only Pochettino returned. Reports say Di Maria immediately left the stadium.
Footballing accounts on social media first noticed the “peculiar” moment in real-time.
“Strange exchange between Mauricio Pochettino & PSG Sporting Director Leonardo, after a match official was speaking with the PSG manager. Leonardo, who looked frustrated with the news, now on the phone. Very peculiar,” wrote French footballing account GFFN.
Though the incident was first described as “extremely violent” by RMC Sport, now officials are stating that Di Maria’s family were in a different part of the house and did not hear anything.
In addition, the Argentine player was not the only target. Intruders also hit reportedly hit Marquinhos’ property while his parents were at home.
The Brazilian player took to Instagram to issue a statement in Portuguese and French.
“The press advisory of Marquinhos, PSG and the Brazilian national team confirms that during the match between PSG and Nantes, the house of the parents of [Marquinhos] was targeted by what is thought at the time to be an invasion.
Family of the Brazilian were at the residence but did are all doing well, fear more than harm,” read the statement, continuing to state the French authorities were already on the case.
La Parisien, a French daily newspaper, claims that Marquinhos father was physically struck
Meanwhile at Parc des Princes, the match ended in a 2-1 result to Nantes.
“There are situations outside of football that also explain the second half,” said Pochettino, after the game.
“It is not an excuse but it brought about a reduction in energy. At full-time, we spoke about things other than football.”
Di Maria was previously a victim of an attempted robbery while he played for Manchester United in 2015.