Tag Archives: Neymar

The Barcelona penalty – was it disrespectful?

Was it really spectacular or disrespectful?  Source: Sky Sports

Was it really spectacular or disrespectful? Source: Sky Sports

There has been a lot written about the penalty by Barcelona in their 6-1 win against Celta Vigo at the weekend, where Lionel Messi simply passed the ball for Luis Suarez to stride on to and net his hat-trick. It’s caused all manner of furore, from both sides of the debate, so let’s lay out the land.

With the home side winning 3-1 and cruising, many are saying that to score a penalty like that is disrespectful. Others are saying that it’s adding to the entertainment of football, showman being showman and it’s not against the rules to do it.

In an essence, both sides are right, mainly because you have to take all angles into context.

Let’s start with the obvious before the debate, the penalty is an arrogant gesture. Whether you love it or hate it, you aren’t wrong if you are either way inclined, you have to have bundles of confidence in it to perform it as it looks awful to miss it.

On the side of those who find it disrespectful, it’s not hard to see why. If that was against the team you loved, against a side with a vast amount of resources and talent, to add that kind of penalty to an already strong position is a little bit of a slap in the face.

It’s very difficult for the goalkeeper to stop, with many deciding a way to dive rather than worrying about rushing down a shot. Would it happen if they were drawing or losing? It’s highly unlikely and that’s why the accusations started.

These three are real showmen, as are the entire Barcelona team.  Source: ITV

These three are real showmen, as are the entire Barcelona team. Source: ITV

On the side of it being fun, it is quite exiting for someone to do something different. It was a little bit of showmanship and craft, that people love, and it almost personified the players involved with the play.

Messi was being unselfish, even though he could score his 300th La Liga goal to set up Luis Suarez for his hat-trick. Their intricate passing play, along with Neymar, has been a highlight of the Camp Nou this season and will likely be for seasons to come.

There was no outcry from Celta, who accepted it, and it’s a totally viable way of taking a penalty. Like I mentioned previously, if you can pull it off it will tend to yield better results when employed as goalkeepers tend to make a move during a forwards run up to the kick.

The only problem I really personally have with it is the “entertainment” factor and many acting like it was some beautiful piece of genius. It was alright, I’ve seen it before and to me, I just wasn’t overly bothered about it. Then again I’m not really bothered about the classy chipped penalty, they are much like layups to a slam dunk, it’s just not as impressive as they hope for it to be.

In the end, the real annoying thing about this debate will be that it will drag on, because more people will copy it in this new social world. Look at the Panenka penalty, look at the amount of sportsman celebrating with a dab, this will also catch on like a house on fire.

So yeah, get ready for more of this. If only we hadn’t reacted at all.

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The Copa America needs a revamp

The attitude Neymar showed during the Colombia game was frankly embarrassing.  Source: The Independent

The attitude Neymar showed during the Colombia game was frankly embarrassing. Source: The Independent

When I learned that the Copa America wasn’t being picked up by any big sports broadcaster, with Premiere Sports having the right in the UK, I was sceptical as to why no-one wanted to have it. There’s a lot of wonderful talent in South America that have shown their competitiveness in the last World Cup, along with a lot of world stars gracing the pitch.

However, as the tournament reaches its final stages, it’s not difficult to see why there wasn’t a big rush from companies to get the Copa America on their channel.

It’s been a really tempestuous tournament so far, with most of the headlines being taken by the petulant actions of players both on and off the field. It started with Neymar, one of the real jewels of the tournament and in real form at Barcelona, losing his cool against Colombia.

Both Jara and Cavani should be disappointed with their behavior.  Source: The Guardian

Both Jara and Cavani should be disappointed with their behavior. Source: The Guardian

He should have been sent off before he was eventually red carded, rightly, before setting off on a verbal triade at the referee. It wasn’t pleasant to see, especially from such a wonderful player who’s had such a positive season and he ended his tournament early.

Then one of the host’s stars, Chile’s Arturo Vidal, was caught up in a DUI car-crash just a day after his country’s draw against Mexico. Hardly a time to celebrate and despite his nation denouncing his actions, it hasn’t stopped him playing and Chile advancing to the final.

It’s only gotten worse, Edinson Cavani was sent off for an altercation with Gonzalo Jara that’s left neither player looking very good. Jara provoked Cavani with a cheeky bum poke, ending his tournament and in turn, it looks likely that he’ll leave his embarrassed club Mainz this summer too.

Even after his DUI, Vidal will be treated like a hero should Chile win the competition.  Source: sports.ndtv.com

Even after his DUI, Vidal will be treated like a hero should Chile win the competition. Source: sports.ndtv.com

Cavani didn’t cover himself in any glory, he looked annoyed throughout the game before lashing out at Jara, which could be forgiven, but his triad at the referee should not. It came just days after the news that his father was involved in a fatal car crash with a motorcycle, so his head might have been elsewhere but at the same time, you shouldn’t behave like that or if it’s likely to happen, don’t play.

Despite some exciting moments and passionate football breaking out at times, the tournament overall hasn’t been excellent. No extra-time has meant more urgency from some teams but more security for others, Colombia tried their best to sneak through by barely playing against Argentina and luckily, it didn’t work.

It’s a real shame that all of this will overshadow some good moments, much like Argentina’s 6-1 win against Paraguay in a thoroughly entertaining affair but in all honesty, it currently has a bit of an image crisis. A little bit of a revamp might be in order, more discipline should be shown from the players and organisers need to find a structure that will propel this competition further into the public’s subconscious as one of the best in the world.

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