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08th Aug 2016

Nocerino “nearly killed” Clint Dempsey with an Ashley Williams style punt this weekend

What was he thinking?

Tom Victor

It’s fair to say Antonio Nocerino’s career probably hasn’t panned out the way he imagined it would.

If you spoke to the midfielder back in 2007 when he was making his Italy debut, we somehow doubt he would have seen himself playing for Orlando City at the age of 30.

The former Juventus, Milan and West Ham (oh yeah, that was a weird loan spell) man has played 12 times in MLS since moving to Florida in the spring, and has admitted to having a tough time adapting.

But that’s no excuse for kicking the ball at Clint Dempsey while the US international was lying prone on the ground.

It reminds us of the time Sir Alex Ferguson claimed Robin van Persie could have been killed in a similar incident involving Ashley Williams.

We’re trying to come up with a reason why Nocerino – who was booked for his actions – felt the need to lash out.

Maybe he was frustrated after seeing Dempsey net a first-half equaliser (the former Tottenham player would go on to score a hat-trick in a 3-1 win for the Seattle Sounders).

Perhaps he was just bored and wanted a way to keep himself entertained in the tough Orlando heat (temperatures topped 33 degrees there yesterday).

He might even have just been frustrated at seeing a forward wearing the number two shirt.

Or maybe, just maybe, Nocerino has heard Dempsey rap and has been waiting several years to take his revenge on the Seattle star.

Clip via Nike Soccer

Yeah, it’s probably the rap. Snapchat