A moment of silence to honor victims of last week’s London terror attacks, including two Australians, has caused a major controversy.
The minute’s silence was reportedly agreed between Australia and Saudi Arabia before a World Cup qualifier on Thursday.
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The Socceroos lined up and linked together around the half-circle, while the Green Falcons did not take part in the tribute in any traditional sense.
According to the Associated Press:
“Both the (Asian Football Confederation) and the Saudi team agreed that the minute of silence could be held,” the Australian federation said, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. “The FFA was further advised by Saudi team officials that this tradition was not in keeping with Saudi culture and they would move to their side of the field and respect our custom whilst taking their own positions on the field.”
The move has caused uproar, though it’s unclear whether the Saudi Arabian team misinterpreted the tribute.
Here’s a report from Australia:
When confronted by knife-wielding terrorists in a London pub, Roy Larner called upon the name of his favorite soccer club.
“(Expletive) you, I’m Millwall.”
The Lions supporter, now being dubbed “The Lion of London Bridge”, wound up in intensive care after taking numerous wounds from knife-wielding attackers. His valor allowed many to escape the Black and Blue Steakhouse on Saturday night.
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The 47-year-old was taken to intensive care after using his bare fists to battle the attackers, and there’s a petition at Change.Org to award Larner the George Cross for bravery. That’s the second highest honor in the United Kingdom honors system.
His take on what happened is fairly legendary. From The Independent:
“I stood in front of them trying to fight them off. Everyone else ran to the back. I was on my own against all three of them, that’s why I got hurt so much. It was just me, trying to grab them with my bare hands and hold on. I was swinging.
“I got stabbed and sliced eight times. They got me in my head, chest and both hands. There was blood everywhere.”
So matter-of-fact, and you have to love that his pride has him trying to explain why he “got hurt so much.” Roy, you were fighting three guys with knives. We don’t have experience with that particular terror, but we like to think we wouldn’t have to explain our injuries.