Argentina’s Di Maria threatened by drug gangs in hometown of Rosario

Reports from domestic media outlets in Argentina revealed that Angel Di Maria, a forward for Benfica and a native of Rosario, received a threatening message at his family home in the outskirts of Rosario. The message, which surfaced on Monday, warned Di Maria not to return to Rosario, stating that a family member would be killed if he did. This threat follows a similar one last year targeting Argentine captain Lionel Messi, also from Rosario. The motivation behind these threats remains unclear, with police investigating various leads. The message, left by a car in front of the private neighborhood where Di Maria’s family resides, referenced provincial governor Maximiliano Pullaro, indicating a lack of safety even with official protection. Despite the threat, Di Maria is expected to participate in Tuesday’s friendly game against Costa Rica, with Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni expressing full support for him. Rosario, known as a major agro-port hub, has witnessed a surge in drug-related violence, attracting criminal groups seeking to use it as a transit point for illegal drugs. Last year, Messi’s family faced an attack on their supermarket by unidentified gunmen. In response to escalating violence, the Argentine government announced plans to introduce legislation allowing the armed forces to intervene in internal security operations to combat drug trafficking and crime in Rosario.

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