Some Argentinian Soccer Player Inexplicably Admitted To (Literally) Needling An Opponent During A Match
BBC- An Argentine football player has caused outrage after admitting that he used a needle to hurt his rivals during a cup match on Sunday.
Federico Allende, a defender for lower-division club Sport Pacifico, bragged in a radio interview about using the needle several times against strikers from top-division club Estudiantes.
Pacifico's president Hector Moncada vowed to expel the player. "We are devastated. This incident has tarnished the team's good work. I will expel him from the club," Mr Moncada told Clarín newspaper.
Pacifico won the match 3-2, knocking Estudiantes out of the competition in a major upset.
Allende gave Cordoba's Vorterix Radio an interview on Tuesday in which he said "you need to play dirty" to beat big clubs like Estudiantes de La Plata.
"I kept piercing the Estudiantes strikers with a needle," said the Pacifico defender.
"We know that top division players don't like contact, they don't like if we waste time or if we play dirty. So that was the way to do it. Football is like that. Football is for the clever," Allende said.
South American football expert Tim Vickery told the BBC that Allende had hidden two needles in his shin guards. One broke but, when the referee was at the other end of the field, Allende used the other to poke Colombian striker Juan Otero several times.
Allende said on the radio: "I completely nullified Otero. He must hate me."
Was that wrong? Was Federico Allende not supposed to steal supplies from his grandmother's sewing kit in hopes of invoking some fairly common fear of needles from his opponent during a competitive sporting event? I know here in the states we frown upon intimidating the opposition by piercing them away from the play, but - considering how proudly he spoke about his on-pitch tailor work - I think Federico Allende is going to have to claim ignorance on this one. No man in their right mind would be that forthcoming about something that is so obviously wrong unless they were completely unaware, so I think I am going to have to pin this on the coach for not making himself more clear when he told his players to "get under their skin".
In all seriousness, this is a move that could work out in favor of Federico Allende assuming that whole expulsion business is temporary. Clearly he doesn't mind being thought of as soccer's version of Sid from 'Toy Story', and that reputation could certainly bide him some possession time. If you're crazy enough to stab someone during a soccer game once then you're damn sure crazy enough to do it again. Don't think that's not something that would be running through the mind of every single striker that meandered their way onto his side of the field. You don't open your ear up to Mike Tyson, you don't spread your legs around Draymond Green, and you don't challenge Federico Allende within a one arm radius. He may never stash another needle in his shin guard for the rest of his career (on the off-chance that he still has one), but the message he literally and figuratively sent by doing it the first time is one with staying power. Human embroidery might cross the line of what is considered gamesmanship, but it's not something that's easily forgotten.