During the game Gattuso was his usual aggressive and terrier like self, but he quite clearly had little control over what he was doing. The once gifted defensive midfielder was a shadow of the player he used to be and on several occasions was lucky to stay on the pitch as his temper ran away with him.
At thirty-three years of age, with seventy-three international caps, two Champions League winners medals and a World Cup one as well, you would think that the little man would be old enough and have enough experience to be a shining role model as captain to the rest of his team-mates in a game like last night’s wouldn’t you?
He was nothing of the sort as he growled and snarled his way through the game, raising his hands on several occasions (when did that stop being a red card?) and trying to pick fights with anyone he could. For some reason he decided to try to intimidate and bully Peter Crouch. It was frankly embarrassing for the Italian as Crouch did little but use his experience to laugh it off and then get the best revenge possible by scoring the winner.
I am not a Tottenham fan but I actually jumped up when Crouch scored, for no other reason than to celebrate the fact that he had made Gattuso look stupid.
I don’t want to be disrespectful to a player who has achieved pretty much all there is to achieve in the game. At his best he was one of the best defensive midfielders in the game, but that best was quite a while ago. Now, with his ability fading, it seems he is relying on intimidation and general unpleasantness to try to replace it.
When Gattuso was booked he was actually a little unlucky as he did just about win the ball. Having said that, it was a bit of a reckless lunge and I have seen people booked for less. His reaction was to punch the ground several times and rant at the referee. That used to be called dissent didn’t it? It was almost as if he was doing everything he could to get himself sent off.
With the referee refusing to send him off and the Tottenham players refusing to be bullied or retaliate, Gattuso then turned his attention to the Tottenham bench. He got involved with Tottenham coach Joe Jordan, not a wise thing to do, and put his hand around his throat and then pushed him in the face. It seems that is also not a yellow card offence.
When the game finished Gattuso sought out Jordan and tried to start a fight. As the two men went head to head Gattuso pushed his forward into Jordan’s face. It may not have been the hardest or most aggressive head butt you’ll ever see, but it was a head butt none the less. After that the predictable chaos ensued and despite the efforts of players and officials to calm Gattuso down, he was still intent on carrying things on.
It really was a disgraceful scene and I hope that UEFA make a stand and ban Gattuso for a considerable period. He was a fine player, but in this day and age, when players are so much in the public eye and need to be role models, he cannot be allowed to get away with his behaviour last night.
Gattuso has now apologised for the head butt.
“I lost control. There is no excuse for what I did. I take my responsibilities for that. I was nervous. We were both speaking Scottish, something that I learned when I played in his home city of Glasgow, but I can’t tell you what we said. I didn’t want to argue with players and I did it with him, but I was wrong to do what I have done. I will have to await what they decide.”
That is not enough.
Tottenham were brilliant last night and made Milan look poor for long periods. It looked as though they were the European veterans and Milan were the novices. The tie still has a long way to go, but at least with Gattuso banned for the return leg we might be able to just watch a game of football.
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So what does the idiot assistant manager get for calling Gattuso a f***ing Italian?
If Milan’s assistant had called Crouch a “f***ing Brit”, it would be a hatecrime and he would be banished for life…
Moreover, Joe Jordan used to play (and was named one of the 110 great AC Milan players of all time) for the rossoneri. So why in heck would he say something derogatory like that? Jordan took a cheap shot at Gattuso, and Gattuso repayed the favour
If it was me, I don’t know whether or not I would have stopped with just a shove and a headbutt. . . if you get me mad enough to do either/both, you’ve got me mad enough to rip someone’s arms out of their sockets!!!!!! lucky for everyone that doesn’t happen and it didn’t happen between Gattuso and Jordan.