We’ve only had three rounds of Premier League action this season but we’re pretty sure we’ve seen the worst challenge of the campaign already.
This weekend saw Watford take on Brighton.
While the match ended in a 0-0 draw, the biggest talking point that emerged was Miguel Britos’ red-card challenge on Brighton’s Anthony Knockaert in the 23rd minute of the game.
Knockaert took the ball down the right-hand side of the field and Britos lined him up from 20 yards away and then flew into his knee-cap with both sets of studs showing.
Britos – 3 red cards since the start of last season. Banana. pic.twitter.com/w3uCMB3M5R
— Albert Vartanian (@therealbertv) August 26, 2017
Knockaert, who fortunately escaped without injury, described the tackle as the worst he has ever been on the receiving end of.
“That was definitely the worst, by far, I’ve ever had,” he said.
“It’s important referees protect players from bad tackles, and I thank the referee for taking the right action.
“It could have been a lot worse for me. I’m fortunate I was able to carry on. I could see it coming – he came in literally to do a bad challenge and I tried to avoid it, but I couldn’t get out of the way.”
Former England striker and current football pundit Alan Shearer said it should appear on this week’s edition of Crime Watch (a show in the UK that is made up of videos of crimes that have been captured on camera).
“It was absolutely crazy,” said Shearer.
“This tackle is that bad, you will probably see it on Crimewatch on Thursday.
“It is dirty, it is high and if they could ban him for longer than three games, they should do. He even has the audacity to complain and moan to the referee.
“It is staggering and it is so lucky he hasn’t caused more damage, and he still doesn’t want to go off the pitch. Get off the pitch! It is a disgusting, terrible challenge.”
A red card for Watford's Britos for the most horrendous tackle.
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) August 26, 2017
Speaking after the game, Watford goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes said Britos had apologised to his team-mates, adding “we need to apologise to the Brighton players as well”.
“He knows what he did and I don’t think he did it intentionally,” Gomes continued.
“He always goes for the ball and he goes fair, but he lost timing and caught the player.”
This was not a once-off incident for Britos.
The Uruguayan defender was already suspended when he arrived at Watford two years ago because of a head-butt on Alvaro Morata in a game between Napoli and Juventus.
He has now been sent off four times in 59 games for the Hornets, with three of those dismissals coming in his last 11 appearances at Vicarage Road.