Editorial: Another unedifying night at the football

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The Independent Online

The world of football is divided over whether or not Chelsea's Eden Hazard should have been sent off after he kicked out at a ballboy who was refusing to return the ball in the club's match against Swansea City on Wednesday night. Apologists insist that Mr Hazard was trying to kick the ball not the boy; critics are demanding his automatic three-match ban should be extended, as was Eric Cantona's when he kicked a fan some years back.

What will perhaps shock the rest of society more is the disclosure that ballboys routinely cheat by quickly passing retrieved balls to the home team and dallying over assisting their opponents. Nor is that all they have learned from their role models on the pitch. The Swansea ballboy hammed up the incident with much melodramatic grimacing and rolling on the ground. Where could he have got his inspiration from?