Brazil striker facing ban for tugging own shirt
Watch the video and you can decide for yourself if Brazilian striker Leandro Damiao was playing dirty.
Leandro is facing a potential six-match ban from his country’s sports justice tribunal (STJD) for pulling his own shirt in an apparent attempt to win a penalty.
The Santos forward tugged his shirt as he ran forward at a corner kick during Sunday’s 3-0 loss to Criciuma.
Although the referee did not see the incident the tribunal brought charges of unsportsmanlike behaviour after viewing video evidence.
On Thursday night the STJD said it was considering if the Brazil international had made an “attempt to dupe the referee” and considering a maximum six-game ban.
'Terrible piece of play acting'
After viewing the match footage the tribunal’s prosecutor Paulo Schmitt stated the forward looked to have displayed an “attitude contravening sporting discipline and ethics,” while decrying a “terrible piece of play acting”.
Leandro, who was Brazil's top scorer with six goals at the London Olympics in 2012, denied the charge.
“I wasn’t play acting – I just wanted to pull my shirt a bit as it was sticking to me.” - Leandro, talking to Brazilian television after the game
He added that he had not appealed for a foul against him.
But the STJD remained unimpressed.
“These days, referees are too much criticized for supposed mistakes they make in some games.
“But the athletes are the first ones not to help the referee, as in this case where the player accused clearly simulates a pull on his shirt in the opponents’ penalty area,” a statement read. - AFP