In life, there are those who love elegance, justice and nobility. They get up early in the morning – the bow tie fanned out over the tweed jacket – to spread love and respect on the planet. They work hard in the morning for a better world and work hard in the afternoon for a fairer world. And then comes Tea Time where they rest a bit before working hard all evening for a healthier world. In life there are those who plead for the upliftment of the soul. And then there are the others. Those who don’t give a fuck anymore.
1. Joel Veltman (Ajax Amsterdam – Sparta Rotterdam)
Fair Play, Joël Veltman has nothing to wax about. So, when one of his teammates gets injured, Joël isn’t sad, Joël sees it as an opportunity. That of overflowing with less effort. Arms dangling, face dismayed, he asks his direct opponent to stop so that the dying patient can be treated. His opponent stops and turns around. “Fatal error” Joël whispers in his ear as he runs for goal to cross. Class as “everyone up” at the Telethon.
2. Falcon (Zamora FC – Mineros de Guyana)
On a long back pass, the Mineros de Guyana goalkeeper calmly controls the ball before signaling to the striker who has come to do the pressing to stop because he is injured. The attacker does not stop, he arrives at the level of his prey and steals the ball from his feet without reaction. Then he turns around one last time to listen to her complaints, smiles, and scores into the empty goal. A hyena.
3. Piero Alva (Caesar Vallejo – Union Comercio)
A goalkeeper who recovers a harmless ball and is injured. A defender who walks to clear the dead ball in touch and allow the trainers to enter the field. Nothing to report until the entry on the scene of Piero Alva, striker of his condition, who rushes to put his foot in opposition and score in the empty goal under the dumbfounded gaze of the defender and the cries of pain of the goalkeeper. Do what?
4. Romero Gamarra (Pañarol – Huracan)
Probably the least classy action in this ranking. Ball at the foot in midfield, Romero Gamarra sees the opposing goalkeeper come out of his cages to help one of his own injured teammates. Without hesitation, Gamarra accelerates to take advantage of the situation and shoot into the empty goal. Oscar for Treachery, Best Screenplay category.
5. The whole Cluj team
Cup match between CFR Cluj, three-time Romanian champions, and CS Dacia Mioveni, a modest second division club. Snowy ground, Mioveni creates the surprise and leads 3-0 in the 60th. Only then, pricked in their pride, the Cluj players managed to come back to 3-2 before burying the charm of the cup with its coat of fair play around its neck, in the 86th. On a classic of the genre, they refuse to return a ball intentionally put in touch to treat an injured and equalize in a defenseless defense. Dirty.
6. Luiz Adriano (FC Nordsjaelland – Shakhtar)
First there is an ugly stamp from a Donetsk player on a Nordsjaelland striker. A long stoppage of play, a few moving snags, twinkling stars and then the game resumed on a dropped ball. Courtois, Willian returns it to the keeper on a long clearance. Yes but now, Luiz Adriano sprints to steal it and have a duel against the goalkeeper. He wins it and scores one of the least fair play goals in history.
7. Ryan Donk (Konyaspor-Kasimpasa)
Turkish Championship. Season 2014 – 2015. Ryan Babel, teammate of Ryan Donk, collapses on the ground. The opposing goalkeeper tries to clear in touch so that we can treat him. Missed, Ryan Donk recovers the ball and takes advantage of the apathy of the 21 extras to place a superb lob and score. Apart from that, Ryan Donk is also the player who stopped a goal opportunity by throwing a second ball at the striker’s feet a few years ago… Fair Play combo, Donk…
8. Ronaldinho (Atletico MG – Sao Paulo)
Of course, Ronnie is 94 kilos of class. But it is also a few grams of craftiness. Like this day when he took advantage of a time out on a key to ask the opposing goalkeeper for water. 20 meters behind the last defender, he talks a bit with the doorman, thanks him for his kindness and sticks a big knife between his shoulder blades as he leaves. There is no offside on a touch, Ronnie knows it and passes the ball to a teammate and inevitably there is a goal. At the same time, Ronnie who drinks water, had to be wary.
9. Marwin Hitz (FC Augsburg – FC Köln)
Hitz is a goalkeeper in Germany and doesn’t like to take goals. So when the referee whistles a penalty for Cologne, Hitz disagrees. “Hitz not happy” he growls. But rather than let himself be beaten like a vulgar Ligue 2 player, he decides to react and begins to discreetly plow the penalty spot during the palaver. Discreetly but wildly. Obviously, Anthony Modeste slips when hitting. Not a very nice gesture Hitz…
10. Elton Martins (Medellin – Deportivo Cali)
A gesture which was very impressive, it must be recognized, but with a lot of anti-game. The Deportivo Cali players were meeting the Medellin players, and Medellin was leading 3-2. A few seconds from the end, Elton Martins, player from Medellin, recovers the ball and wedges it on his neck (which obviously prevents the others from playing). Hop the game ends, and it’s won. Martins deliberately decided not to respect his opponents, but at least it was funny.
11. Overmas (Arsenal – Sheffield, February 1999)
During this match, the Gunners won 2-1. Yes, but you have to know how. Marc Ovremas certainly scored, but taking advantage of the ball which had been voluntarily released by the Sheffield players following the injury of one of their players. In short, the striker did not hesitate to take the ball directly and score. Classic, but still not fair play.
However, Arsenal was coached by Wenge and the Alsatian obviously hates injustice. He therefore, on his own initiative, asked to replay the match, which was won 2-1 by his team, but fairly this time. It is class.
12. PSG (PSG – Barcelona)
And Barça’s 6-1 comeback against PSG in 2017 was that fair play? Breaking the hopes of thousands of supporters when PSG had won the first leg, is that fair play?
To be ridiculed for 94 minutes while there are cameras and spectators… well, no, that’s not Fair Play at all, guys…