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[Video] Watch Van Persie’s ‘Elbow’ On Cuellar – Was It Intentional?

Arsenal’s Robin van Persie clashed with Aston Villa defender Carlos Cuellar as his elbow caught the defender on the face on Sunday. Watch the incident here.

Arsenal came from 2-0 down to beat Aston Villa 3-2 on Sunday thanks largely to two penalties converted by star striker Robin van Persie. However, shortly after the third goal, van Persie clashed with Aston Villa defender Carlos Cuellar near the half way line, with replay’s showing the strikers elbow catch the defender on the face.

In my opinion it wasn’t intentional, but as an Arsenal fan i might be being biased. Villa manager Alex McLeish has called for the FA to take action, but judging by the video below that I found on Daily Motion, do you think the Dutchman has a case to answer?

van Persie vs Carlos Cuellar. by THEPHENOMSBACK



  1. Roland C Rozario

    January 30, 2012 at 2:38 pm

    Its not intentional.
    Its simply trying to keep once balance whilst jostling for the ball!!
    No issue [Period]

  2. Zak

    January 30, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    Not intentional…. Trying 2 create space

  3. Herman

    January 30, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    He quite clearly looks at the defender before elbowing him in the face. It’s a stonewall elbow and a red card which the referee has bottled. He won’t receive a ban because the ref has seen it clearly and will have to stand by his decision.

    • gooner jim

      January 30, 2012 at 5:26 pm

      you tit he quite clearly positions himself for the incoming ball cuellar face was really low because he bottled the challenge and made a right meal of it ,all good players think quickly about their positioning just like van the man but villa wouldnt know anything about good players haha 3-2 win gunnnnnnners!

      • Fire

        January 31, 2012 at 7:25 am

        Positions himself for incoming ball lol your as deluded as arsne whinger !!!
        Good players ?? they can’t wait to get out ask cesc fabregas

        • pontus

          January 31, 2012 at 11:13 am

          fire, you’re a loser. probably kicked out of school at age 12 or something. Simply because you’re too dumb. Shut up.

          • Fire

            January 31, 2012 at 12:01 pm

            keep playing your fifa on xbox pontus lol

            • AVFC

              January 31, 2012 at 12:44 pm

              Have to say it’s going to be split between Arsenal fans and Villa fans.

              But you can see he looks at Cuellar first and then elbows and then goes for header it was not one fluid motion so yeah it was intentional.

  4. Gab Toura

    January 30, 2012 at 3:01 pm

    Definitely was unintentional – Cuellar’s face was so low, RVP couldn’t avoid hitting him if he tried, How do you defend a high ball by bending behind a striker in that way???

  5. A/S

    January 30, 2012 at 3:01 pm

    Intentional. Probably deserved a yellow.
    To be fair, though, I don’t think it was meant to hit Cuellar in the face as RvP can’t know where exactly it would be. It was just an attempt to ward him off.

  6. MikeSA

    January 30, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    Several observations:
    1. van Persie does glance at him and see him coming, but when he makes contact he is not looking at him, he’s looking at the ball.
    2. The forearm/elbow is not high at all (which you would expect from a deliberate attempt to injure – compare that to Lescott the other week, or Rooney last season), but the defender seems to very low for some reason, which van Persie could not have known at that point, hence I doubt van Persie was doing anything other than fending the defender off and retaining his balance against the challenge.
    3. There is very little force behind it, also indicating it was not a deliberate elbow or forearm to the defender’s face.
    4. What you don’t see in that clip is that the referee is looking directly at it from quite close, in fact a very similar angle to what the video shows, and he saw nothing in it (nor did the commentators on the replay for that matter, but then I’d hardly rate their opinions as worth consideration for the most part anyway).

    Personally I don’t think this was a deliberate attempt to injure, nor was it reckless or dangerous (RvP would not have expected the defender’s face to be where it was, he would have expected it to be higher, nearer the level of his own head), so I would be surprised if this was deemed by the FA (or anybody), to be worthy of any sanction.

    As already mentioned, Lescott the other day and Rooney last season were both high, hard, and rather obviously deliberate.

    This was nowhere near either of those. If the FA did choose to make something of it, I would have to (yet again), query their honesty.

  7. josh

    January 30, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    He doesnt swing his elbow out, he actually tucks it in and if you look at it closely he doesnt even hit him with his elbow… its his forearm which does, meaning he was doing it to create space. Look at it again.

    • Adam

      January 31, 2012 at 12:48 pm

      Haha, I’ve stopped it on the exact point of contact if that’s his forearm your body has developed incorrectly,

      But neither here or there. He just shouldn’t be swinging elbows back like that, if you watch the full clip after contact he moves forward then jumps for the header, so it can easily be classed as deliberate

  8. Canadian Gooner

    January 30, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    If Rooney didn’t get an red card for his elbow on a Wigan player last year then RVP (who kept his elbow low, barely raising it) should not even be getting the attention that this situation has already got.

  9. Bracknell Gooner

    January 30, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    He does not swing the elbow and it is more face to elbow and then RvP pushes back against the contact. As RvP then moves his body forward there is very little impact. All the muppets that say he looking at the defender, so it must be intentional. Watch the fact that both players move to the space and both misjudge the flight and don’t jump.

    • Herman

      January 30, 2012 at 3:26 pm

      The ball hadn’t arrived yet. RVP moves across and takes him out before the ball has even come into shot. It doesn’t really matter from a Villa point of view if he is suspended. And as I said earlier I would be shocked if he did as the ref has seen it and will have to stick by his original decision. Not matter how wrong it might be!

  10. Judith Le'Strange

    January 30, 2012 at 3:17 pm

    It’s only McLeish being a nasty vindictive bad looser. If it had been the other way round he would have brushed it aside, plus he thought AV were on a winner.

  11. Peter So

    January 30, 2012 at 3:17 pm

    In my opinion, it was AM’s attempt to distract his defeat for that day. I believe it was an accident. A foul maybe, yellow card may may be, but certainly not a red …

  12. Rob Mitchell

    January 30, 2012 at 3:18 pm

    One of the most cynical elbows I have ever seen. Looks where Cuellar is, lines him up, and BANG.

    • Jordan Gooner

      January 30, 2012 at 3:42 pm

      Rod, you obviously do not watch much football. I would cotinue to follow ladies netball if I were you!

      • John

        January 30, 2012 at 3:56 pm

        You clearly haven’t watched much netball 😉 I don’t understand this ‘looking at’ business; of course you look where your opponent is. Ever played sport yourself?

  13. lordgunner

    January 30, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    so when his birmingham player break eduardo legg its a contact sport and its not this type of player for mc leish but when someone does the way around (nothing broken no carreer nearly put on hold) he ask the player to be ban………………..what a bad looser this guy is

  14. Jordan Gooner

    January 30, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    I completely agree with MikeSA excellent analysis, when Van Persie is jumping whilst the defender is behind him. Van persie is concentrating on the ball. If villa had won the game, would McLeish had mentioned it! This is purely sour grapes, and the FA, should see through it. Mcleish should receive a life time ban, from football for wasting everyone’s time!! At least most of the Villa supporters would be happy.

  15. Danish Gooner

    January 30, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    It is nothing,did you watch Lescott that was something this is powderpuff.If you start banning for those tackles none will be left at the end of 90 minutes.

  16. Dan T

    January 30, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    It’s a tactic all forwards use. Just fending off but if you can do it like he did with an elbow then it hurts like hell and makes the defender think twice before challenging you next time.

    He will have been going for his rib area, that hurts but is never going to be punished by even a free kick. He was not to know that the defender would be crouching down. Watch any other forward, they will always use this tactic every game. If his head hadn’t been down and he put his elbow in his chest then you wouldn’t even have noticed it.

    RVP is the king of tactics like this – He’s a very clever/sly player. Anything to gain a slight mental advantage when they’re next challenging each other.

  17. Rob Mitchell

    January 30, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    Dan T knows. You other gooners remind me of the typical mother standing outside the young offenders court says “my boy would never do that” after the lad who has 80 previous convictions gets sent down

  18. muzza

    January 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    listen why are you comparing it to others. he looked 1st then bang the elbow. the simple fact is, so called top 4 teams dont get brought up on it yet every other team do!

  19. gooner jim

    January 30, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Erm! isnt everyone forgetting something , why the hell was dunne still on the pitch missed that one didnt ya mcleish you twat!!!

  20. AJ

    January 30, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    Yeah, definitely intentional. Hope he gets three games and ruins Arsenal’s challenge for a Europa spot

    • Zigzag

      January 30, 2012 at 8:16 pm

      Yeah, definitely stupid comment. Sour grapes from a fan with no hopes even for Europa spot. Support McLeish, he knows how to lead a club to relegation.

  21. Nasri

    January 30, 2012 at 5:34 pm

    Please dont comment on this stuff his already don wrong erro because this is not the first time

  22. jjdt

    January 30, 2012 at 6:36 pm

    should get a red card! To bad it wasint. villa would get the 3rd goal;)
    but no Ban for that fa!

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