Soccer can unleash a many different types of emotions — euphoria upon success, tears following heartbreaking losses, and bad decisions that will prompt players or coaches to react in a manner that will surely get them fined. As viewers of the beautiful game, we also share these emotions – some more intense than others, depending on how diehard you are. Fair-minded individuals understand that in the heat of the moment, anything can happen, and I’ve witnessed a few during my lifetime
- Zinedine Zidane‘s head-butt in the World Cup final
- The plethora of fights between rival teams
- Didier Drogba losing his mind at the conclusion of the Chelsea-Barcelona match
- Michael Ballack hysterically chasing the ref in that same match
- On any given weekend, Jose Mourinho is on the verge of doing something incredible
I have sympathy for these managers. Being a former collegiate athlete myself, I have been there in person a few times when emotions ran high and unfortunate events occurred that marred the overall match. So, I understand, but I don’t condone it. However, I couldn’t help but crack a smile and then later be paralyzed in a state of shock after seeing Alan Pardew head-butt an opposition player.
Pardew, who doesn’t shy away from controversies, has upstaged all of his past squabbles. This is the same manager who pushed an assistant referee in 2012 in a match against Tottenham Hotspurs. Never have I seen that before. Sometimes coaches argue with players, sometimes they meet nose to nose before being held back, but never have I seen a coach actually head-butt a player. Pardew apologized after the match, an apology that didn’t look sincere, I may add, and was later fined, which likely didn’t come to a surprise for Pardew. Judging by his behavior in matches, I don’t believe it would be a stretch to claim that Pardew might have anger issues.
Playing the hypothetical game, how do you believe Pardew would react if the referee awarded an opposition team a bogus penalty kick in the last minute of a match that would put Newcastle in the relegation zone if converted? I can’t stop going through a bunch of different scenarios in my head, concluding with Pardew momentarily losing his mind. It’s the same excitement I get when Jose Mourinho is about to comment on a situation or when Mario Balotelli is being interviewed, because I sense something extraordinary will occur.
The spotlight will be on Pardew for the rest of the season. Currently, the team is competing for a Europa League spot, but after the recent transgression, he is walking on thin ice. Mike Ashley might be quick to fire Pardew for any small instances or season failures, so it would be in Pardew’s own interest to behave in an urbanely manner for the rest of the season.