It’s an unwritten rule of football that for every moment of greatness there must be a corresponding moment of idiocy.
The ‘equal and opposite reaction’ rule isn’t restricted by country, though, so a moment of greatness in Saudi Arabia can be cancelled out by something bizarre in England.
Or, in the case of this weekend, vice versa.
However, when the good is this unstoppable strike from Aston Villa’s John McGinn, the bad has to by very bad, right?
Over to Saudi Arabia, then, and the Friday game between Al-Faisaly and Ohod in the country’s top division.
Both teams went into the early-season game looking for their first win and, on the strength of this mayhem, it’s easy to see why.
Admittedly, the kit clash might not have helped – whoever decided on pitting a team with vaguely maroon-coloured shirts against… another team with vaguely maroon-coloured shirts might need to have a bit more of a think next time. However, using that as an excuse feels a bit generous to the players on both sides.
Okay, first off you have the Sunday League style goalmouth scramble as the ball comes across the box. A mess, sure, but not a huge one when you look at it on its own.
The reaction of Fahad Alansari, the midfielder beaten to the ball at the back post, is one of exasperation, and reasonably so. But keep your eye on the Kuwaiti international.
It’s easy to ignore the action in the middle as you eyes are drawn to the Ohod goalkeeper, acting as if the ball has been replaced with a stick of butter. And can we be entirely sure it has not?
But then, as an Al-Faisaly player finally finds the time and space to get a shot away, he must think he’s scored. But no, there’s our friend Alansari, looking the other way, lying on the ground and denying his team what could have been a vital goal.
At least he saw the funny side.
Al-Faisaly ended the game with a 2-0 win, so that moment of tragicomedy ultimately made little difference to the result.
Does this mean we’ve learned absolutely nothing from the whole episode?
Hopefully we at least know to steer clear of maroon v maroon match-ups going forward.
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