We think the rules of professional soccer deserve some editing. Apparently if one player gives a player on the opposing team a friendly kiss, a penalty is in order. Seems like an exemplary show of sportsmanship if you ask us.
But when Lee Mansell, a midfielder with the Bristol Rovers leaned in to peck J.J. O’Donnell, a midfielder for Gateshead FC on the lips, the refs didn’t share our view.
He was given a yellow card (which, if you’re a non-sports fan, means a caution, and if a player gets two of them in a game, he is ejected).
Lee later said that this kiss was a way of deflecting a fight that he felt coming on, so maybe it’s not so sportsmanlike after all.
“We either clash heads and he goes down or I end up doing something silly,” he said. “I did it to defuse the situation. It’s the first time I’ve been booked for kissing someone… But we had a laugh and a joke about it with the lads afterwards. It’s another thing to add to the list of daft things I’ve done on the football pitch.”
Here’s video of the incident:
— BT Sport Football (@btsportfootball) December 19, 2014