This one is based on a little “BIT (E)” of an incident which took place in the match between Italy and Uruguay at the ongoing FIFA World Cup in Brazil . Before it ended the spectators weren’t too sure if Professor Hannibal Lecter had been let loose amongst them !
Italy and Uruguay went into this crucial Group D encounter with the knowledge that the winner will go through to the next round..and at the very least a draw will suffice for Italy to make the cut.And the Uruguayan players knew it from their experience of playing in Europe that in a situation like that there is no other team than Italy in world football which can play better for that result.
The scores remained level almost till the final whistle when finally in the 81st minute Uruguay broke through on the effort of their Captain Diego Godin, who jumped over the Italian defenders to score the all important winner which sent his team into the pre quarters and Italy packed their bags for a long haul international flight.
This was preceded by high drama when firstly the Italians were a man down for over 30 minutes in the second half and secondly because Luis Suarez could not keep his teeth in check! In the 73rd minute the Italians protested that their defender Chiellini had been fouled and BITTEN by Suarez.The referee seemed to have missed it but television reviews clearly showed Suarez digging deep into Chiellini’s left shoulder.
By the time the dust had settled over the famous Uruguayan win, the international media and the players community had come down heavily on Suarez and calls for a hefty punishment had gained traction . So much so that it prompted Evander Hollyfield, an ex World Heavy Weight Boxing Champ and a victim of a similar bodily assault by Mike Tyson during their title fight in the 90s (see photo below), to say that he guessed “any part of the body is up for eating” !!
The incident would have evoked shock and (gn)awe at any point in time and involving any player.But when it comes to “Chewey” Luis the consternation is much more pronounced as apart from being a serial goal scorer he is also a serial biter! He has had two previous incidents wherein he has displayed a fetish for “toothball”. In 2010 he was dubbed the “Cannibal of Ajax” after he bit PSV Eindhoven’s Oltman Bakkal in a Dutch league game.This incident was also not noticed by the referee , but “Chew-arez” was later handed a seven match ban.
Later in 2013 during the English Premier League (EPL),while playing for Liverpool, Suarez was once again seen sinking his teeth into Chelsea’s Serbian defender Branislav Ivanovic. He was given a 10 match suspension for the same.
These are not the only on- field transgressions of Suarez.
In 2011 he allegedly racially abused Manchester United’ s Patrick Evra during an EPL game in October 2011.He remained unrepentant and was fined £40000 and banned for eight matches.Later he also refused to shake hands with Evra when the teams met again during the EPL.
In the 2010 FIFA World Cup in a quarter final match against Ghana , Suarez deliberately caused a hand-ball at the goal mouth to certain goal by the Ghanians. He was red carded but Uruguay went on to win the match and played the semi finals. “I made the save of the Tournament” was his unrepentant comment.
During the World Cup and also during the EPL in 2013 -14 it seemed that Suarez had turned over a new leaf as he was amongst the headlines for his impassioned effort and ability to finally harness his prodigious abilities. He had scored 31 EPL goals before coming to the FIFA 2014 and had also scored two breathtaking goals against England to knock them out of the tournament. And then out of the blue came the latest incident and that too at the high table of World football and in front of billions of fans. Maradona writes in his column that it was presumably the tight marking by the Italian defenders which led to the implosion of of Luis Suarez.A theory doing the rounds is that there was a probable provocation on the part of Chiellini wherein he may have “kick- started ” Suarez into such a blatantly unacceptable reaction. Whatever be the provocation Suarez was grossly out of line with his behaviour and even more damning has been the revelation that there was a long standing enmity with Chiellini which has probably resulted in a bite being taken off his left shoulder. Uruguay and Italy had met in the third place match during the Confederations Cup in Brazil held in 2013 and even then Suarez had tried to bite the right shoulder of Chiellini during a tense match which was tied 2-2 at the end of regulation time. This match was eventually won by Italy on penalties.
As Uruguay can potentially go on to play four more games at FIFA 2014 the impending enquiry has assumed significance. In spite of the referee not seeing the offence the enquiry is still valid as FIFA allows the use of videos and any other evidence to punish players retrospectively.
More on the present status after we have discussed the the strip 😎 The strip shows a marauding #9 in white jersey climbing all over a hapless #3 in blue jersey and biting him on the left shoulder with anger in his eyes while the two jostle for ball possession.The caricatures are wearing the colour and numbered jersey of Luis Suarez and Chiellini respectively. The Amul Girl is shown in the traditional yellow and black attire of the referees at the FIFA World Cup.She is in all likelihood depicting the disciplinary role of the world body as the actual referee had not noticed the on- field offence . The eye for detail in the strip is a stand out effort.
The Tag Line…Kaata toh hai…ab chamach bhi mil jaye …..is an amazing spin on the hindi word for a fork as well as for biting.The need for the spoon is felt as a fork and a spoon are needed for savouring a dish. In this case the biting inspired strip is taking a dig at the likely penchant of Suarez to consider rival players as edible and thus the need for the full complement of eating implements.
The Punch Line…Anytime Bite…is emphasising on the fact that the Amul butter can be relished at any time of the day just as Luis Suarez can be expected to bite anytime during a football match (I thank my stars for not ever having to be playing for or against him).
As of now the enquiry is still under way and Suarez’s lawyer and head of the Uruguayan football have rushed to Brazil to defend his case.They have also alleged a European conspiracy to weaken the effort of a South American and impoverished nation (or is it essentially to introduce A Uruguayan Vampire as most of them in the Twilight Series and Vampire Diaries are of Caucasian ascent and probably not a positive endorsement of the Caucasian ethnicity !)
Before signing off one can’t help but wonder as to why someone on top of his prowess would repeatedly indulge in a barbaric and violent manner to squander all he has garnered so far by way of fame , prestige and riches. Some sports psychologists are ascribing the difficult childhood that Suarez had,as one amongst seven children from an underprivileged background, for his bizarre and violent streak.What is also apparent is that this fallacy in Suarez is deep set and a few sessions of therapy can only widen the gap between two incidents and not prevent them.His denial at the post match press conference underscores this very fact wherein he is blatantly lying and attributing the entire sordid saga to a clash of shoulders as just “one of the things that happen on the football field”. (I hope Luis Suarez doesn’t come after me for this “biting criticism” of his behaviour !!!) The bottom line remains that Luis Suarez is a disgrace who has sullied the image of the game, his country and destroyed his own legacy.