Home / EPL / De Jong’s Steamroller versus Karl Henry’s Karate Kick


So it’s been another week of horrendous tackles in the Premiership and the two most brazen culprits are no strangers to infamy. Nigel De Jong is know for many things, being Dutch, his hatred of giving interviews, his ability to win the ball; but mostly for the horrific tackles he often flies in with, which I have dubbed the “Steamroller.” Though he certainly didn’t invent it, De Jong is the undisputed master. Like the Shawcross’ challenge on Ramsey last season, it was the sort of tackle where a big man throws the full force of his body weight into an area with no definite idea of where he will hit. With all the thought and compassion of a daisy cutter bomb moving toward the ground De Jong is just aiming to level anything within that area.

De Jong’s is not stupid, it’s a bad tackle, but by a clever player if that makes sense, but he’s a disgrace to the Manchester City jersey. He leads with his left foot and it starts as one of those hard but fair tackles, he gets the ball, but gets enough body contact to make the opponent know he has been in a challenge. It’s the second part which delivers the deathblow; the totally unnecessary follow through with his right leg. This traps Ben Arfa’s, or anyone else’s, left leg awkwardly as he is going down from the initial impact. This is designed to maximize the overall impact and was premeditated. It’s the angle of the second hit on Ben Arfa that does the damage, spreading the force across the outside of shin, then hitting a small point on the back of the leg, causing the bone to snap; and sure enough he’s stretchered off. Even the Dutch manager has taken note and he has been stripped of the honor of wearing the national team jersey. But this week, De Jong is not alone on the pedestal of infamy normally reserved for a hooligan who bottles his mate after a night out on the beer, Karl Henry is threatening to knock him off the top.

Watch here: De Jong Tackle (some content may be offensive)

With his mixed martial arts style challenge on Jordi Gomez had shades of ChuckLidelltempered by the moral compass of Darth Vader. Runningfull tilt at the ball, he and Gomez were always going to collide, the shocker was that after Gomez won the ball, Henry followed through with full force and sent him end-over-end onto his back. Miraculously, Gomez seems to be alright, saved by his shin guards or the skin of his soccer socks, after getting stretchered off, but you have to wonder what was going through Henry’s head. Its plain from the replay that he began his ninja kick as the ball was played and had time to line it up.

Watch here: Karl Henry Ninja Kick (some content may be offensive)

In my opinion he figured if he couldn’t get the ball he was definitely going to get the man. Whats more is, like De Jong’s kick the chest of Alonso during the World Cup, he had broken Zamora leg. Granted, you can tell from the replay it was more the ground that broke his leg than the actual tackle, from the way Henry catches his foot beneath while pulling him down by the shirt the intent is clear.

Watch here: Karl Henry Leg Breaker (some content may be offensive)

So the weekend ended with two more horrific tackles by two of the Premierships premier hatchet men. Obviously something needs to be done about this from both the standpoint of officials and the managers, but our question for today is which tackle do you think was worse?
Were they both premeditated?

I’m going say De Jong was worse, and it was premeditated.

Written by: Matthew Wall, editor, soccerprose.com


About the author: Matthew Wall


I've played soccer since I could walk thanks to my father and love keeping up on all the latest gear and gab. I'm in my twenties, and I'm lucky enough to have found work in search marketing for a leading soccer retailer after completing my M.A. at Georgetown in 2008. My team is Liverpool, and national side is Ireland, but I've also got a passion for GAA and a number of sports. Feel free to give me a shout on Google+


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