16.05.2024 14:59 h

Raccoon invades pitch during MLS game

A raccoon ran on the field and stopped play in the Major League Soccer match between the Philadelphia Union and New York City on Wednesday.

The game was stopped for around five minutes while stadium security tried to capture the animal and remove it from the pitch

Despite lacking real pace, the mammal, native to North America, showed impressive footwork to evade the lumbering stadium staff, one of whom was trying to collect him in a plastic garbage can.

The crowd at the stadium, in Chester, Pennsylvania, chanted "Raccoon, Raccoon" before the invader was caught and taken away.

The Philadelphia Union said in a post on X, formerly twitter, that the raccoon had been "put in good hands" with a pest control company and "safely released".

Major League Soccer meanwhile dubbed the raccoon 'Raquinha' in a post on X.

"Unofficially, Raquinho the Raccoon spent 161 seconds on the field tonight, which was the most by a raccoon in @MLS history," the league quipped.