25 years ago today: Eric Cantona kung-fu kicked a Nazi

And before anyone asks, the guy he kicked was a member of the British National Front with a string of assault convictions. He was undeniably a Nazi.

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He was wearing cleats! That’s got to make it more painful! GOOD!

anti-facist-spencer-punch|nullxnull

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I think I found it:

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25 years, and I never knew that before. Fucking British press. (Except for the Guardian, mostly.)

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It was the Independent who reported that, but it got lost in the Cantona hate. From the linked article:

The reaction was not entirely negative. While most journalists went straight for their high horse, the Independent’s Richard Williams said, only partly in jest, that, “Eric Cantona’s only mistake was to stop hitting him. The more we discovered about Mr Simmons, the more Cantona’s assault looked like the instinctive expression of a flawless moral judgement.”

I don’t know why the Guardian didn’t mention why Richard Williams wrote that.

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ab-fab-laughing

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What a friend we have in Jesus
He’s a saviour from afar
What a friend we have in Jesus
And his name is Cantona

(Trad.)

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Excellent form. Practice makes perfect.

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Thank you! (ha)

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‘I was in the wrong place at the wrong time,’ he says now, then draws a diagram in my notepad to show where he was sitting that night and exactly what happened after Cantona was sent off.

Because of course he was. He’s so innocent he had to draw a diagram to show exactly how innocent he was.

Simmons was 17 when he attacked Rajanayagam. He was 20 when what he repeatedly calls ‘the incident’ occurred. At his subsequent trial for threatening language and behaviour, he attacked the prosecution counsel after being found guilty, leaping over a bench and executing a flying kick of his own. He was sentenced to seven days in jail, but only served 24 hours.

Yep. The behavior of a perfectly innocent human being.

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An interview from 2008

What was going through your mind when you kung-fu kicked that Palace fan? If you’d landed on your feet instead of your backside, what would you have done next?
Richard, South Shields
[ Long pause ] I did land on my feet, not where you say. That’s why I went to hit him again. But I didn’t hit him strong enough. I should have hit him harder.

He also answers an unrelated question that I had wondered about for years.

When did you come up with the idea of turning your collar up? Were you copying somebody else?
Ian Huff, America
It wasn’t an idea. I put my shirt on. It was a cold day. The collar stayed up so I kept it like that. We won, so it became a habit to play with my collar up.

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Hadouken!

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Nice movie.

Are there mandatory maximum sentences for Nazis?

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Nice shot, especially the open-mouthed fans.

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Ì am not a man I am cantona