When I think of Paraguayan football I have fond memories of an impressive World Cup run and of the passionate fan base led by my favorite World Cup fan and pop culture icon, Larissa Riquelme.
But recently the improved FIFA ranked nation was embarrassed by the actions of a footballer from their nation. And Paraguay soccer player Jose Pedroso was truly guilty of a despicable act.
The Paraguayan footballer received a 27-game ban for choking a referee during a Chilean second-division match. The player’s red carded tirade is featured on youtube.com and the footballer reportedly said that he “was not the least bit sorry” following the match. Pedroso was immediately forced to resign from the second tier Chilean club and was rumored to be heading back to his homeland of Paraguay due to the incident.
The choking act happened following a very rough tackle by Pedroso in which he lowered his shoulder into an opposing player and struck him with significant force. Aware of the potential sending off on the play Pedroso quickly backpedaled around twenty yards away from the official and the spot of the foul. After the referee rightfully notified the Paraguayan footballer that he was going to receive his second yellow card the player grabbed the unsuspecting ref by the throat and proceeded to choke him for a few seconds.
Pedroso then attempted to bull rush the official again after being pulled away, but was once again restrained by a few of his own teammates. Security rushed the field to fend off the riot inspired club whose goalie proceeded to yell at the official even after he had been choked. It was truly a despicable act performed by Pedroso and his lack of guilt following the act proves that he deserved a much worse punishment then 27 matches.
Pedroso was suspended 20 matches for the choke, 5 for the second attempt, and 2 for the double yellow cards. The greatest punishment of all though will be the fact that anybody in the world can type his name into youtube.com and witness the enraged player being physically being pulled from the field possibly for the last time in his professional career.