Robin van Persie, whose switch from Arsenal to Manchester United in a LeBron James style “Decision” inspired arguably the greatest fan rant of all time, was struck in the head by a ball drilled by the foot of Swansea defender Ashley Williams.
Van Persie fortunately wasn’t injured, getting up immediately and needing to be restrained by teammates. United manager Sir Alex Ferguson said of the situation that van Persie “is lucky to be alive” and that “you can clearly see that he could have been killed.”
Check out a close-up video:
“(Williams) should be banned for a long time because that was the most dangerous thing I’ve seen on a football field for many years.
“It was absolutely deliberate. The whistle has gone, the game has stopped and he has done that right in front of the referee, he could have killed the lad.
“It was a disgraceful act by the player, he should be banned for a long time.”
For the record, banned=suspended in British footballspeak.
Here’s the whole video, including the scuffle after the strike.
Williams was given a yellow card for the kick and van Persie was given one for his reaction. It’s unclear if it was indeed deliberate, but it’s tough to argue that Van Persie should’ve gotten the same punishment as Williams. Then again, I’m just a mere American.
If Roger Goodell were in charge, both would be suspended, fined and the commish would buy himself a new watch. And if Gary Bettman were in charge — well, the world’s second-most-profitable league would’ve folded years ago.