You would think that Manchester United's lively Brazilian right back Rafael da Silva would have learned his lesson in last years Champions League match versus Bayern Munich when he received his second yellow card and was tossed out of the match after he grabbed on to Ribery as he broke free on the dribble. Incidently, it was also the last match that Manchester United lost.
Rafael Red Card Versus Bayern Munich
But this past weekend versus the Tottenham Hostpus Rafael was again shown a red card after earning his second yellow card. Granted, it was a weak call and not deserving of a card, but when you're on one yellow card already you have to be on your best behavior. It's something that Rafael hasn't learned yet.
In a way, it goes against the type of player Rafael is: tireless, energized, fighting for every ball, chasing everything down, not letting his size affect his battles with bigger forwards, and getting into the attack as well as defending. All in all Rafael is exactly the type of player you want on your team. Yet all of these great qualities can get in the way if he doesn't know how to contain some of that spirit and continues to earn red cards.
It's tough though, how can you not admire the drive and spirit of such a young player. Just look how he stands up to his former teammate, Carlos Tevez.
Wayne Rooney used to be a player who you feared might do something stupid and get a red card. Now though Rooney is a professional and has learned to channel his anger or frustration. Hopefully Rafael would learn to do the same.
At just 20 years old, the Brazilian has a very bright future ahead with both Manchester United and the Brazilian national team.
Twins: I wonder if his twin brother, Fabio, who plays left back for Manchester United might be able to slip on Rafael's jersey and play right back. Do you think Sir Alex Ferguson would dare to even try it? I'm gussing he just might, otherwise he's going to have to play Gary Neville.
Just playing. No knock against Gary Neville, he is of course a quality right back, but his age has caught up with him and now looks destined to follow Roy Keane into the managerial ranks.
Update: It looks like Alex Ferguson joked about this very thing, playing Fabio in place of Rafael. Take a listen to what he said.