Deadspin- After a training session this morning, a lawyer representing the mother of his child and some police officers attempted to arrest him and force him to pay the $17,000 he apparently owes in unpaid child support, per the Liverpool Echo. He was not arrested after some of the police officers apparently refused to detain him.
The police then stopped the team bus as it attempted to enter the stadium this afternoon. Agains, Valencia was not detained.
Valencia then started for Ecuador and helped his squad accrue a 3-0 lead over the defending Copa America champions by the time he came off in the 82nd minute. Valencia went down injured, and had to get a golf cart to take him to an ambulance. Thing is, he appears to have faked his injury and used the occasion to get into an ambulance in the tunnel, therefore escaping the police.
After the game ended (with a 3-0 Ecuador victory) the judge in charge of his case rescinded the arrest order, so Valencia will not need to make a third daring escape, sadly.
I don't know what else you do here but tip your cap. Not only is this guy a fairly savvy fugitive, but he's basically the best teammate ever. Putting himself at risk of arrest THREE different times just to play in a soccer match? Making sure the game was well in doubt before faking an injury in the final minutes and - yet again - slipping through the fingertips of the police? That's the kind of guy you want lining up on your side of the field. The kind of guy that will do anything to help his team win, even if anything includes him potentially ending up in a South American prison.
Also, this pretty much says all you need to know about the importance of soccer in every country other than the United States. Law enforcement literally had this guy by the wrist on multiple occasions, but didn't want the result of their precious sport to be effected. Spent all day going back and forth in their heads on whether to uphold justice or uphold the sanctity of the game. I imagine them sitting down at the station picking pedals off a flower. "Arrest him? Arrest him not? Arrest him? Arrest him not?". Shit, they probably only let him play because they couldn't come to a unanimous decision before game time. Bet they were sitting in the stands still debating and didn't even realize he was calling for the stretcher after injuring himself on an imaginary piece of grass. Enner Valencia is undoubtedly one sly son-of-a-bitch, but he was surely aided in his escape efforts by cops that valued their fandom over their profession. Here in the states we generally let criminals continue playing, but overseas the people in charge of locking them up actually enable their participation so much that they inevitably throw out all charges. They might not have morals, but they have an unmatched level of loyalty.