‘Ponce, leave now!’ were the cries of supporters inside the Estadio Nuevo Los Cármenes after Argentine centre-forward Ezequiel Ponce pulled a goal back for Granada in Sunday’s 3-1 defeat to Valencia.
The unusual reaction from the crowd was as a result of the 20-year-old putting a finger to his lips after twisting away from Valencia defender Eliaquim Mangala to rifle the ball into the bottom corner.
Already trailing 3-0 after a brace by Simone Zaza and another from Santi Mina, supporters of the relegation threatened side made their thoughts absolutely clear towards the second half substitute and have since forced an apology from Ponce.
“I wasn’t telling the crowd to be silent but a particular person, who said certain things to me in the warm up,” the former Newell’s Old Boys striker said.
“I apologise to the people and to that person too. It has been unfortunate and I am sorry. That person said things that hurt me and so I reacted.”
Granada manager Lucas Alcaraz weighed in on the subject at full time: “Ponce has committed a serious error, a lack of respect but it is an example of inexperience.”
Ponce was recently named in the Argentina under-20 squad for the World Cup in May and is currently on loan at Granada from Roma.