Updated 04:36 AM EDT, Thu, Oct 28, 2021

Former El Salvador Football Player Shot Dead in Petrol Station

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Former El Salvador footballer, Alfredo Pacheco was gunned down at a petrol station in the city of Santa Ana. Officials are currently looking into the motive behind the crime.

In a report with the BBC, two other people were injured in the attack. Pacheco was El Salvador's most-capped player. He was banned for life in 2013 for reportedly match-fixing.

According to The Guardian, the 33-year old former footballer was out with a group of friends on Sunday when the unknown gunman opened fire on the group. Pacheco and the two injured were taken to a nearby hospital in the city of Santa Ana, west of the capital, San Salvador.

Pacheco played as defender for both the Salvadoran clubs Club Deportivo FAS and Asociacion Deportiva Isidro Metapan. The 33-year old former football star also played for the New York Red Bulls in the United States. Pacheco would receive his first cap with the men's national team on November 17, 2002, in a friendly match against the United States.

The 33-year old footballer leaves behind a wife and three children, who he lived with in the United States. Pacheco spent one football season "on loan" with the Red Bulls in 2009. He played for the team 14 times in what was considered to be one of their worst ever years. The former defender of El Salvador was one of the 14 Salvardoran players of the national team who were found guilty of accepting bribes to lose matches in 2010 to 2013.

Pacheco reportedly played 86 times for his country. He holds the record for making the most appearances for his national team.

Pacheco's death comes after former Honduran footballer Arnold Peralta was also killed after being shot. Peralta played as a defensive midfielder for the Rangers and was shot dead on December 10 in his hometown of La Ceiba. His murderers remain unknown, though police are still working on the case. A report with The Scottish Daily Record says that Peralta's killers fled the scene on a motorbike. Like Pacheco, Peralta left behind a wife and a young daughter. 

El Salvador, which is a relatively small nation in Central America, has one of the highest murder rates in the entire world. The crime rate in El Salvador has been alarmingly high as of late. Police data said that there has been a surge in homicides, with a 55 percent increase in homicides this year compared to last year. Police also reported that this year has seen 6,068 murders.

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