Unsurprisingly, I am still struggling to get to grips with the ins and outs of Premier League football. I certainly feel like I understand a bit more about the different clubs, where they are from and who manages them – so that, at least, is a step in the right direction. However, while I continue to try and get my head around it all, I’ve been finding it interesting to look a bit more into the footballing world outside the actual matches.
Last time, I briefly looked at the behaviour of football fans after the tragic incident involving Albert Ebosse – https://originalfooty.wordpress.com/2014/08/27/a-first-time-footballer-11/ – in which I logically concluded that enthusiasts ought to find less extreme ways to express their disappointment (preferably not involving injury or death…). After criticising the inappropriate actions of die-hard supporters, it is difficult to ignore the actions of the players themselves.
I am sure that we are all familiar with the infamous Luis Suarez of Uruguay. Suarez sunk his teeth into the tasty Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini during the World Cup this summer and was consequently suspended from all football-related activity for 4 whole months. Extreme? No. I might feel a little bit of sympathy for the star player being handed this harsh punishment if it had been his first warning. But it wasn’t. And it wasn’t even his second. In 2013 Suarez was banned from a total of 10 games after taking a bite of Branislav Ivanovic during a Premier League match. Previous to that, it was PSV Eindhoven’s Otman Bakkal who had the unfortunate pleasure of meeting Luis. I appreciate that he is a phenomenal football player but how many times does he need to be warned? He’s like an insolent child who refuses to do as he’s told. I hope he will have learnt his lesson after the most recent incident that also cost him a whopping £65,680 – although that probably didn’t dent his bank account too heavily.
This week, it was a lesser-known player that hit the footballing headlines. Austrian player Ismail Gunduz was given a hefty 70-match ban for head-butting the referee. Gunduz, playing for SK Rum, was far from impressed after being shown a second yellow card and assaulted the referee without warning. Naturally the club immediately threw the player out, assuring fans and the press that they firmly distance themselves from such behaviour. “This sentence is madness,” claims the Austrian, who maintained that he slipped and fell into the referee. To be honest, denying the offence just makes the whole debacle more embarrassing – he should take the ban like a man and apologise for his actions.
Whilst I am not a professional football player, I have been in my fair share of pressure situations. There have been countless occasions where I have had to hold back from lashing out at someone, so I understand the feeling. If I were to head-butt an annoying person in my life, my Mum would be far from impressed. However, as a full-time footballer, you’ve got your Mum and the rest of the world judging your actions…
- See an anger management counsellor on a regular basis
- Find a new, more relaxing, job e.g. beautician
- Calm the hell down