Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Everyone remembers Oprah Winfrey’s free car giveaway in 2004. MLS referees went the extra mile in Week 12. Except, instead of a Pontiac G6, it was a red card everyone walked away with.
A total of six red cards were shown in Week 12. The MLS Discipline committee is sure to have their hands full Monday morning.
Futty Danso kicked off the red-card extravaganza by denying Camilio a clear goalscoring opportunity in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Wells Thompson followed suit with a second yellow card that left the Chicago Fire with 10 men for a majority of the second half. The Fire would falter 1-0 at PPL Park.
Dimitry Imbongo and Bobby Boswell upped the ante with a scuffle that sent both players off the pitch earlier than anticipated. Boswell instigated the incident with a headbutt inside the area. Imbongo retaliated with a headlock/chin toss that belongs in the squared circle, not the pitch.
Though, you would think Imbongo was saint-like with his response according to the color commentary of Brad Feldman.
Shane O’Neill wanted a part of the action in the 90th minute of the Colorado Rapids' 1-1 draw with the San Jose Earthquakes. O’Neill was already sitting on a yellow. His denial of a clear goalscoring opportunity on Chris Wondolowski sealed his fate.
But the winner of Saturday’s red-card extravaganza was Blas Perez.
Perez’s mid-air challenge left Leonardo Gonzalez bloodied. And to make matters worse, it left his team down to 10 men.
The word “intent” was abusively thrown around the Twittersphere following the call. It’s funny how the word can always be found in social media, but never the rule book.
“Intent” should not absolve anyone from suffering the consequences of their actions. Perez challenged for a ball with his elbow unnecessarily high, made contact and suffered as a result.
Alexi Lalas said it best on Twitter following the match:
The game has changed. If you jump with your elbows, you risk a red. Evolve or become extinct.
Six MLS players will be “extinct” in Week 13 as a result of their red card suspension.