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Soccer player fondly recalls kicking a rude fan

Posted by: James Lileks under Sports Updated: March 4, 2011 - 12:19 PM

Just to keep the “Sports” tag alive, here’s a tidbit from today’s celebrity wire. The director of football for the New York Cosmos looks back on his career, and recalls with happiness and pride the time he kicked a spectator:

Manchester United legend Eric Cantona has claimed that his infamous kung fu-style kick on a Crystal Palace fan was the highlight of his career.

The Frenchman was banned in 1995 after launching himself into the crowd with a kick at Palace fan Matthew Simmons after being sent off.

"When I did the kung fu kick on the hooligan, because these kind of people don't have to be at the game.

"I think maybe it's like a dream for some, you know sometimes to kick these kind of people.

 "So I did it for them. So they are happy. It's a kind of freedom for them."

If you’re wondering whether the clip of a 16 year old kick can be found on YouTube, well, of course.




By the way, a detail from his wikipedia page about the fallout from the kick:

Simmons was later tried for threatening language and behaviour. He received a seven-day prison sentence, but was released the next day.  It was also revealed that Simmons had previous criminal convictions, including an attempted violent robbery in 1992 where he had attacked a Sri Lankan petrol station worker with a spanner in Croydon, and that he had attended a National Front rally a short time before the Selhurst Park incident.



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