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10 football players with criminal records

Rohith Nair
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Timeless

Eric Cantona arrives at a hotel in Saint Albans in London to appear before a Football Association disciplinary commission

Eric Cantona arrives at a hotel in Saint Albans in London to appear before a Football Association disciplinary commission.

Eric Cantona

When Manchester United played Crystal Palace in 1995, few people remember why Eric Cantona was sent off by the referee (he was sent off for kicking Crystal Palace defender Richard Shaw). But everyone remembers what transpired immediately after the red card.

As Cantona made his way towards the tunnel, a Palace fan named Matthew Simmons confronted the French forward and abused him with some highly derogatory words. Cantona was certainly not amused as he launched himself into the crowd and directed a Kung-Fu kick at Simmons. He did not stop there as he went on to punch the fan a number of times.

Cantona was arrested for assault. His sentence was two weeks in prison which was later overturned after an appeal. He ended up doing 120 hours of community service. He later admitted that it was a mistake but still labelled it “a great feeling” and that it was a moment that fans would treasure for a long time.


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