Sanchez evokes spirit of Rivaldo as he falls dramatically to the floor holding his head seconds after being hit by a throw-in

Sanchez evokes spirit of Rivaldo as he falls dramatically to the floor holding his head seconds after being hit by a throw-in

Rivaldo , Sanchez

Credit: Mail Sport

Alexis Sanchez and Rivaldo have plenty in common – skillful, South American footballers with Barcelona on their CVs and the world at their feet.

And, as it happens, they’re both prone to melodrama.


Sanchez evoked the spirit of the legendary Brazilian on Wednesday night with a theatrical moment which had fans everywhere shaking their heads in embarrassment.


The talented forward, whose future at the Emirates Stadium remains up in the air, produced the kind of reaction that, on second viewing, ought to leave him with a face as red as his Gunners shirt.


Having got a little too close to Christian Fuchs on the touchline during the Premier League clash, Sanchez was stung by the Austrian defender’s throw-in.


Feliz por la victoria pero termine con el labio hinchado 😂😢happy for the victory but ended up with a swollen lip 😂😂👍🏼⚽️

Yet instead of shrugging off the blow – he had been asking for it a little, after all, given he was standing a matter of inches from the Foxes player – Sanchez waited a few seconds before collapsing to the floor holding his face.


The ball had bounced off his shoulder and into his cheek but the delayed reaction was priceless.


The whole incident was reminiscent of Rivaldo’s infamous play-acting during the 2002 World Cup.


Playing for Brazil against Turkey, he was struck on the legs by a ball kicked by Hakan Unsal.


For reasons known only to Rivaldo, the former AC Milan great fell to the turf, his hands covering his face.


Despite the entire series of events taking place right underneath the nose of one of the assistant referees, Unsal was sent off.


Rivaldo was later fined £1,000.


In Sanchez’s defence, at least he was actually hit in the face.


And as if to make a point he later took to Instagram to show a picture of his war wound – a slight snip on his lip – as well as him treating his injury with a bag of ice. Though the knock could easily have been picked up in a late coming-together with Robert Huth.


Arsene Wenger, perhaps unsurprisingly, claimed not to see where the ball struck his star forward.


‘I think he didn’t know that he had to be further away,’ he said.
‘Alexis thought he was in the right position. The referee or linesman should have told him.’


Culled from Mail Sport 

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