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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

"Lose the arms next time, Danny love"

Danny Welbeck probably was clipped by the Montenegro defender. He probably should have had a penalty.

The mistake he made was in going down like a second-rate actor, arms away from his body, flailing at the empty air. It's the same mistake that got Gareth Bale booked for simulation more than once this season. It makes even a genuine case look like a con. It's got "is he watching?" written all over it.

If you trip over in the street your hands shoot out in front of you to try to break your fall. They don't imitate a dying swan.

2 comments:

Gary Parkinson said...

See also throwing your chest forward and head back, like you don't when you're falling without intention of attention. They call it the Archer's Bow.

David Timoney said...

Once upon a time, pitches were just heavy fields of mud. This placed a premium on lower body strength: you needed thighs like Gerd Muller just to move.

Dribblers tended to be wee fellas out on the wing, where the grass still grew, whose trick was to push the ball ahead of the defender and run faster. Being Scottish and alcoholic were optional extras.

Over the years, pitches got better and play speeded up. Dribbling into the box became a viable alternative to hitting the bye-line. As defenders evolved from brick sh*thouses into Franco Baresi, upper body strength became crucial to levering a shooting chance.

The consequence was faster, taller dribblers, who tended to use their arms more for balance. Leaning the upper body in also invites more thigh/leg blocking challenges by defenders, so you see more "going over".

Modern diving isn't a plague on the game, merely an evolution in technique, and the body-shapes adopted by players is evidence of this change, not of a decline in sportsmanship or an increase in cheating.

Mind you, that Gareth Bale is well dodgy.