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It takes two to penalty!

Suarez, Messi, Neymar, Celta Vigo, Barcelona
Last weekend Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez combined to score one of the most outrageous two-touch penalties ever. However Neymar claims the goal was supposed to be scored by him.

As weeks passes we get closer to the very real possibility that shortlist for the 2016 FIFA Ballon d’Or award will include Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez – the forward line of an unstoppable Barcelona. The trio have scored an astounding 86 goals between them this campaign and, if that wasn’t enough, have now taken to trolling fans and rivals alike.

In a 6-1 victory over Celta Vigio at the Camp Nou last Sunday, Lionel Messi was set to score from the spot, for a penalty that he won. At this time the score was 3-1, with Luis Suarez on a hat-trick when the audacious happened. With the inside of his left boot Messi deferred the ball to Suarez who slotted home for the most daring – or disrespectful – penalty in a long time.

Neymar, missing from the above paragraph, would later suggest that Messi’s pass was meant for him but the ball was closer to Suarez. That just goes to show how good Barcelona are at present, when the perpetrators themselves are interchangeable.

Two-touch penalties have been tried before – famously by Johan Cruyff and Jesper Olsen for Ajax and infamously in the aborted attempt by Thierry Henry and Robert Pires for Arsenal.

Can other clubs replicate Barca’s two-touch penalty?

A bemused Real Madrid would probably never showboat in such a fashion – after all Cristiano Ronaldo passing up a goal-scoring opportunity is a nigh-on impossibility. A Chelsea player would likely slip while passing from the spot while Mesut Ozil would forget the rules walk to ball into the net for Arsenal. Manchester United would have Wayne Rooney passing the ball to Juan Mata, who would turn around and bring Michael Carrick into play, who would then look backwards and play a sideways pass to David de Gea. German giants Bayern Munich, so efficient at penalties, would probably hand the ball to Dutchman Arjen Robben who would pass from his left foot to his right whereas Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez would take turns in one-upmanship.

If the two-touch penalty is disrespectful one has to ask: why do you watch the beautiful game then? Genius should be expressed and encouraged, not stifled.

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