If news conferences were refereed like soccer matches, a Brazil team media rep might have received a yellow card for tossing a cat Wednesday during a World Cup interview. (Watch the video below.)
The 22-year-old forward laughed at the cat’s appearance. But the media dude unceremoniously grabbed the kitty by the fur and flicked it to the floor, drawing gasps.
The interview then resumed.
Brazilian reporter Raisa Simplicio, who shared the video, said an American reporter later asked the Brazilian coach, known as Tite, about the cat. The coach lightheartedly suggested the journalist ask the adviser who “took the cat,” according to a translation.
The cat later appeared unharmed and was photographed chilling beside the team logo as Vinícius Júnior continued to field questions.
Many fans on social media objected to the kitty’s rough treatment.
“That guy doesn’t understand the LOVE the internet has for Cats.Big mistake my friend,” wrote one.
Brazil plays Croatia in a quarterfinal on Friday.