It’s been a week of horror challenges, horror misses and naïve mistakes in the world of football. Look out if you’re sitting in a car outside the Levi Stadium in Santa Clara because here are your nominees for Wally of the Week.
3. Marouane Fellaini
Now I know it wasn’t his fault he was made to shake hands with Ronald McDonald before the game, sparking hysteria on social media, but it was Fellaini who was the clown this week. Manchester United were playing Real Madrid in a friendly in Santa Clara on Sunday and Marouane Fellaini was in the spotlight for the wrong reason in California. Scott McTominay whipped a ball in from the right flank and it fell to Fellaini who was just a few yards from goal and unmarked but the Belgian got his effort very, very wrong. The ball came off his foot and flew into the air and almost into orbit. It came down behind the goal, probably with ice on it, a few minutes later. While we’re here, I wanted to give a mention to both teams for their horrific penalty shoot-out where only 3 penalties were scored out of 10.
2. Naby Keita/Diego Demme
After a brilliant season in the Bundesliga, Naby Keita has been linked with a move away from RB Leipzig all summer. Liverpool have been the team with the strongest links to the Guinean midfielder and there have been rumours of a £66m bid from the Reds. Leipzig have refused to sell and insisted the player was happy at the club so an incident in training this week certainly won’t have helped the situation. His teammate, Diego Demme, lunged in on Keita after the ball had gone and seemed to injure him with a nasty tackle. Keita seemed quite upset at the challenge and exacted revenge just moments later with a crunching challenge on Demme that left him in pain on the ground. The training session was stopped as a result of the tackle being so bad and Demme was helped off the pitch with his knee is bandages. Leipzig posted a video later on with Keita sitting beside Demme, who was lying on a treatment table, and said Keita had issued an apology and both seemed happy and forgiving. The immaturity of both players has led to a PR disaster for Leipzig as the story of Keita stopping training went worldwide instantly.
The Brazilian youngster joined Chelsea in the summer of 2015 and has yet to break into the first team and after his antics on social media this week, I doubt he’ll ever get the chance. Kenedy was sent home from Chelsea’s tour of the Far East after making offensive comments on Instagram about China which Chelsea perceived to have offended the Chinese people. The posts included an image of him smiling with the caption “Porra China” and another of a sleeping security guard with the caption “Acorda China Vacilão.” Now I’m not fluent in Portuguese (use google translate if you’re really interested)but I doubt these comments would’ve gone down well with anyone they were aimed at. The posts, which Kenedy made the day before Chelsea’s friendly against Arsenal, forced Chelsea to ‘solemnly and sincerely’ apologise to their Chinese fans via the club website. They went on to say Kenedy had been ‘strongly reprimanded and disciplined.’ It wouldn’t surprise me if the young Brazilian was shown the door very soon.