Arsenal vs. Manchester United and Other Football Madness
It's good to know that our brothers on the other side of the pond have their own measure of base, uncivilised (sic) sporting madness.
If I hear one more Arsenal fan tell me how unjust everyone is for picking on poor Vieira and the lot, I do think I'll paint the walls the color of vomit.
If you missed it (note to most Americans - you did) the Arsenal vs. Man U. showdown disintegrated at the end into a 3rd grade schoolyard brawl. After Vieira undercut Ruud Van Nistelrooy (and he did, Wenger, you schmuck) as he leaped up to attempt a header, Vieira struck out at RVN with his spikes, earning him a second yellow and his eighth red as a gunner. In the 93rd minute, RVN missed a penalty shot, and after the final whistle, was taunted and struck by Martin Keown, and shoved nearly off his feet by Lauren. Reports are that Vieira also went after RVN in the tunnel after the match.
Vieira's comments were pure comedy. "I feel the referee got it wrong because of the reaction of Van Nistelrooy. Maybe the referee did not see that I did not touch him, or something like that. But Van Nistelrooy gave the impression that I touched him, so that is why he gave me the second yellow card."
No, Vieira, you moron. You got the second card because you went after his family jewels, spikes out. And Keown, gawd, what a childish brat. Such nonsense does nothing to help the image of the top players as crybabies.
In the end, Arsenal was charged with not enforcing discipline and may see a point reduction. Six Arsenal players were charged with a total of 11 offenses and will probably see a collective ban of close to 20 games. Two Man U. players were charged with improper conduct as well for their part in the post-match scuffle. RVN did receive a yellow for his foul on Vieira going after the header. Sounds about right to this viewer.
The only thing missed was Arsene Wenger's diatribe about RVN being a "cheat." Childish sour grapes. The managers are supposed to be above their players' schoolyard antics, but I'm thinking that the Arsenal side learned theirs from the boss.
As bad as all that is, it doesn't compare to Italy's problems. Riots, fires, fan deaths. Ah, football, gotta love it. Next time some Euro tells me how uncivilised (sic) Americans are, I'll just have to tell them to shove it in their Avellino. Or I could just say "England vs. Turkey" and leave it at that. The closest thing America has seen in terms of sporting event violence that would even come close to that description is the Cleveland Referee Water Bottle Assault. Regrettable, certainly, but at least they weren't setting the stadium on fire, assaulting rescue crews trying to reach a mortally injured fan, and injuring a couple dozen police officers.
Civilised my arse...