Hump Day Dumpster Dive: Maurizio Sarri’s homophobia for the win in Serie A

Here we are, folks. Another Wednesday finds us yet another step closer to the grave, and still we persist in wasting precious moments chatting shit about soccer on the internet. On the other hand, we probably only have about a year left before American president Donald Trump starts a nuclear war with Russia and sends us all to a gruesome, fiery death. So best to distract ourselves in the meantime, then. Let’s dive into the dumpster.

NAPLES, ITALY - DECEMBER 10:  Napoli's coach Maurizio Sarri gestures during the UEFA Europa League Group D match between SSC Napoli and Legia Warszawa on December 10, 2015 in Naples, Italy.  (Photo by Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images)Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images

A Vile Homophobe Might Win Serie A

The hotly contested Worst Person in Sport Award has a new frontrunner this week, as Napoli manager Maurizio Sarri decided to remind the soccer world that he’s a vile homophobe. Sarri got into a little contretemps with noted annoying person Roberto Mancini during Napoli’s loss to Mancini’s Internazionale in the Coppa Italia yesterday. Sparked by a red card for Dries Martens, Sarri lost his mind and allegedly called Mancini a “faggot” and a “poof.” Mancini, presumably for having the nerve to be angry at being the target of hate speech from a colleague, was sent to the stands.

After the match, Sarri hardly denied the accusations, but instead offered half an apology and said that “what happened on the pitch should stay on the pitch.” Drawing from the tried and tested playbook of “I’m Not a Bigot, I Just Said a Bigoted Thing,” Sarri went on to say “I think the whole thing is a being exaggerated, they were words of anger, not homophobic comments…My actions were neither sexist nor racist, simply the product of anger. But I accept that another could think differently.” If by now you haven’t fainted from the stench of that insincere bullshit, remember that Sarri has record when it comes to homophobia.

Last year, while still manager of Empoli, he said: “Football has become a sport for fags. We suffered twice as many fouls, but we had more yellow cards. It’s a contact sport in Italy and but the whistle is blown a lot more than in England because of the interpretation by homosexuals.” Not only did he escape punishments for his comments, he went to on to a bigger job at Napoli. Having hired him as known bigot in the first place, it’s unlikely that the club will bother sanctioning him now. It will probably be left to the Italian Football Federation to take a stand, but let’s not forget that association is run by an awful racist. Stay classy, Italian soccer.

PARIS, FRANCE - APRIL 15:  PSG fans soak up the pre-match atmosphere during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final First Leg match between Paris Saint-Germain and FC Barcelona at Parc des Princes on April 15, 2015 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)Lars Baron/Getty Images

Who Do The Paris Saint-Germain Fans Think They Are?

Fans of Paris Saint-Germain expressed their displeasure at the team this week, booing off the side at half-time for being 0-1 down to Toulouse in the Coupe de France. PSG went on to win anyway, but after the match, manager Laurent Blanc expressed his displeasure at the crowd reaction. “We are winning almost all our games and people are still not happy.” Indeed, PSG has only lost one game in all competitions this season, and are a full twenty one points clear in Ligue 1. Fans of successful clubs being spoilt and entitled is nothing new, but PSG managed to display some special hubris, given that this is the greatest team it has ever had in its, err, illustrious forty-five year history.

Given that their club wasn’t even a real thing until it was bought by Qatari Sports Investments in 2011, and that it has essentially turned French soccer into a one horse race, some may wonder how the supporters could possibly be upset. But maybe PSG fans are just one step ahead of the rest of us. The owners of elite clubs already treat their clubs as businesses rather than sporting and cultural institutions, and fans are seen as customers, not as stakeholders. So as customers, they are entitled to express their dissatisfaction with the quality of the product. Winning is virtually guaranteed because of the flood of money that has been injected into the club, and if there’s no fun left to be had in unpredictable results, you might as well demand that the wins are at least enjoyable.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 20: Ashley Cole of AS Roma reacts during an AS Roma training session at Lakeside Stadium on July 20, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)Michael Dodge/Getty Images

Ashley Cole in (The) MLS Will Be a Disaster

Ashley Cole has had his contract terminated with AS Roma by mutual consent, and is reportedly set to join the LA Galaxy in Major League Soccer. Embarrassingly for MLS, it was only 18 months ago that Cole rejected links with American soccer by saying that he wasn’t “ready to relax on a beach yet.” After a disastrous spell in Serie A, during which it was demonstrated very clearly that he was indeed ready for a beach, the former Chelsea man seems to have had a change of heart. The move makes a lot of sense for Cole, as no major European team that saw him play last season would be interested, and there are few better places to be as a single multi-millionaire than Los Angeles.

For the Galaxy, however, this one is a bit of a head-scratcher. Cole was legitimately world class in his prime, but he doesn’t exactly have the profile to sell out arenas and get jerseys flying off of shelves. Full back is arguably the most physically demanding position in the modern game, and Cole’s legs are completely gone. It’s as if the Galaxy learned some sort of warped lesson from David Beckham’s time at the club, and have gone on to sign progressively less famous and more washed up former England internationals. At this rate, James Milner will be rocking up in Hollywood in January 2024.

Lyon's Steed Malbranque, left, challenges for the ball with Nantes' El Hadji Papy Mison Djilobodji, center, during their French League One soccer match in Lyon, central France, Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013. (AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani)Laurent Cipriani/AP

A Brief Update on Papy Djilobodji

No one had ever heard of him, he literally only played for a minute, and now he’s off. What the fuck was that about then?