Copa America authorities red-faced after playing Chilean national anthem for Uruguay

Glendale, United States of America: Copa America Centenario organizers were left red-faced on Sunday after an embarrassing blunder which saw Chile's national anthem played instead of Uruguay's ahead of their Group C clash with Mexico in Arizona.

The incident happened as the teams lined up for kick-off at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

After Mexico's anthem was played without a hitch, Uruguay prepared to line up for their own national song.

However as the first few bars rang out it soon became clear there was a problem as the wrong, Chilean anthem rang out.

Uruguayan players looked at each other in confusion, while coaching staff gesticulated their annoyance.

The small pockets of Uruguayan fans who had made the long journey to the home of the Arizona Cardinals NFL team whistled and jeered at the error.

A statement from Copa America organizers blamed the mistake on human error.

"This evening during the pre-match ceremony, due to human error, we inadvertently played the incorrect National Anthem," a statement said.

"We sincerely apologize to the Uruguayan Federation, the Uruguay National Team, the people of Uruguay and to the fans for this mistake.

"We will work with all parties involved to ensure such an error does not occur again."

However this isn't the first time that a wrong national anthem has been played before a football match. In March 2015, during a friendly game involving Argentina and El Salvador at the FedEx Field in Washington, the stadium authorities had played Kazakhstan's national anthem instead of El Salvador's familiar 'Himno Nacional de El Salvador' anthem.

Similarly Kazakhstan's shooting team was left stunned after a comedy Kazakh national anthem from the film Borat was played at a medal ceremony at championships in Kuwait instead of the real one.

There was to be insult to injury for Uruguay on the evening as Mexico took all three points through an own goal from Alvaro Pereira and late strikes from Rafa Marquez and Hector Herrera.

Uruguay's lone strike came from captain Diego Godin, the Atletico Madrid player heading in an equalizer 16 minutes from time that looked to have secured the South Americans a share of the points, only for the Mexicans to come back strongly later in the game.

With inputs from AFP

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Updated Date: Jun 06, 2016 14:04:30 IST