Tuesday 24 January 2012

Pepe Le Pew — What a Stinker Part 1

Real Madrid's Pepe. Odor-able?

On the whole, footballers are nice guys who play the game in the right spirit. Occasionally, there is a player who every other player knows about and are wary of. This kind of player is someone who you (as a player, coach or supporter) are relieved to know is on your team, or otherwise will send alarm bells ringing in your head because he is on the other team. Portugal and Real Madrid defensive midfielder Pepe, or his name in full Kieper Laveran Lima Ferreira, is this kind of player.

For those who don't know, Pepé Le Pew is an "odor-able" cartoon character who is portrayed as a French skunk with an unpleasant scent and who cannot accept "no" for an answer.

Pepe's mean reputation has been built from malicious tackles, red cards and match suspensions. Examples include last season's El Clasico where he was sent off for SFP on Dani Alves, and in the 2008-2009 season where he received a 10-match ban for kicking Getafe player Francisco Casquero while he was on the ground.

The following incidents occurred during the Copa del Rey quarter-final first leg match between Real Madrid and Barcelona on Wednesday 18 January 2012. This date was also the 41st birthday of Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola. The match finished 1—2.

Incident One Pepe's Reckless Challenge

In the 17', Pepe (white 3) makes a reckless challenge on Sergio Busquets (red/blue 16) by stamping on his foot when trying to play the ball.

Referee César Muñiz Fernández cautions Pepe and says "No More"

Referee César Muñiz Fernández saw this as a reckless challenge and dealt with it by issuing a caution and public warning.

Incident Two Jumping and Leading with Arm

In the 20', Gerad Pique (red/blue 3) uses his arm as a tool and strikes Pepe (white 3) in the face.
Pepe appears to "overreact" as he lies writhing on the ground as his Real Madrid team-mates (e.g. Sergio Ramos; pic from this news article) apply pressure on the Referee.

Referee César Muñiz Fernández correctly cautions Pique; however Pepe's theatrics and the way in which his Real Madrid team-mates surround the Referee are unsporting and unacceptable behavior (see this news article for further photos).

Incident Three Pepe's Embarrassing Theatrics

In the 64', Pepe tussles with Barcelona's Cesc Fabregas for the ball and upon realizing that he will lose possession, grabs his face with both hands and tries to get a foul. Replays show that perhaps Fabregas did touch his left cheek but—unless Fabregas has really sharp nails or an iron claw of a hand—it was not the kind of contact that would bring about such a violent and farcical reaction as displayed by Pepe.
The AR would have had the best view and didn't flag any foul. Play was allowed to continue but eventually Barcelona sportingly put the ball out of play so that Pepe could be attended to.

Pepe probably realized that he had lost possession to Fabregas and attempted another way to stop play and prevent Barcelona from attacking

Pepe's theatrics is embarrassing and reminded me of Ronaldo's theatrics from last season when Real Madrid played an away UCL match at AC Milan (see Webb's Weak Woeful Week).

Look out for Pepe Le Pew — What a Stinker Part 2, where further incidents involving Pepe continue.

No comments:

Post a Comment