A violent fight broke out today in the stands of a soccer game and escalated into a riot at the Arena Joinville stadium in Santa Catarina, Brazil.

The bloody brawl was between fans of the Atletico Paranaense and Vasco da Gama teams (video below).

The fight broke out 17 minutes into the game when Atletico was leading 1-0, reports the Associated Press.

The soccer players appeared to plead with the fans to stop, but they just kept kicking and punching each other.

According to TheBigLead.com, three people were flown to a hospital on a military helicopter. One of the injured may have died, but that has not been confirmed.

Police were not in the stands when the fighting began, but about 80 private security guards were supposed to make sure the opposing fans were separated.

When police finally arrived, they shot rubber bullets and tear gas at the crowd.

"This is deplorable," said Vasco da Gama coach Adilson Batista. "It's sad to see images like these just before the World Cup in our country. I'm shocked, this is not sport."

"We tried to tell the fans to stop because things would only get worse," added Atletico Paranaense player Luiz Alberto. "We looked at the stands and there were no cops. There was nobody there to stop the fighting. I'm playing for 20 years and I've never seen anything like this in person. We will have a World Cup in our country and we know these images will be shown everywhere."

The game was eventually continued and completed.

Sources: Associated Press and TheBigLead.com