In a show of remarkable sportsmanship, Zlatan Ibrahimovic refused to convert a penalty against Bournemouth on Saturday.
As is custom at Old Trafford when Manchester United are not winning, the Red Devils were awarded a spot-kick in the final 20 minutes.
However, instead of doing the easy thing and shooting past Artur Boruc to score his seventh goal in as many games, Zlatan opted to pass the ball to the Bournemouth goalkeeper, who did well to make the situation look natural by diving down low.
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Zlatan’s decision not to accept the gift presented to him by referee Kevin Friend (pictured above arguing with the 35-year-old about his decision to miss the spot-kick) could prove to be one of the important moments in English football history.
For many years, Premier League officials have done their best to make Old Trafford a fortress for United.
And today was no different, with Friend’s penalty offering coming after he chose not to show Zlatan a red card for elbowing Tyrone Mings, instead dismissing Bournemouth midfielder Andrew Surman for daring to touch the Swede’s chiseled pectoral muscles in the aftermath.
Ibrahimovic demonstrated incredible humility by protesting the award of United’s 72nd-minute penalty.
He clearly wanted to win with honesty. Unfortunately, he may have underestimated the difficulty that playing with only 11 players at home can cause, even against 10 men, as Bournemouth held on for a 1-1 draw, much to Mr Friend’s fury.
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