Dozens of people were injured in a crush outside the stadium where Brazil were training for last night's World Cup qualifier against Venezuela, medical and police sources said on Tuesday.

Television pictures showed chaotic scenes in front of the Mangueirao stadium, in the northern city of Belem, where an estimated 75,000 people turned up hoping for a unique opportunity to see the world champions in the flesh.

Desperate fans, including children, were seen running, falling over each other and being trampled on amid a background of screaming and wailing sirens. Riot police were brought in and used pepper spray to try and control the situation.

The stadium, which holds around 45,000, was full one hour before the practice session, causing angry fans outside to jump over the fences or force open the gates.

Jaime Bastos, the doctor responsible for the stadium's first aid post, said he had lost count of the number of people he had treated.

"When everyone comes in at once, you can't note down anything," Bastos said.

The Globonews cable television station put the injury toll at around 100, while other media said dozens had been hurt.

A police spokesman told Reuters that they had expected around 35,000 for the practice but that 65,000 had got inside the stadium and around 10,000 had been locked out.

Entry was free but fans were asked to bring their own food.

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