Yesterday, we received a new addition to the list of seemingly bizarre fixtures being played for little to no reason.
It came in the form of the inaugural Maradona Cup tie, held between the Argentine Legend’s two former sides Boca Juniors and FC Barcelona.
Played on a Tuesday night in December, in Saudi Arabia no less, the motivations behind the game seem clear as day. Money. Especially when you consider the rumours that another club Maradona was heavily associated with, Napoli refused to take part due to a lack of financial incentive offered by the organisers.
Manager Xavi opted to field a much-changed side, with 11 changes in total, including the first start for Dani Alves since being re-signed.
The game itself consisted of a largely uneventful first half, with almost no highlights to remark upon.
Except, this moment of absolute destruction by midfielder Agustin Almendra.
He began firstly by snatching the ball of Yusuf Demir with an exquisitely timed tackle from behind, which sent the Austrian international crashing down towards the turf.
After regaining the ball, Almendra showed excellent composure, using the sole of his foot for the sweetest nutmeg you’ll see all day on Ferran Jutgla.
Jutgla clearly overcommitted himself as he lunged at the ball, Almendra made no mistake, however, calmly rolling the ball through Jutgla’s leg with a brutal nutmeg.
Adding further insult to injury, Jutgla’s momentum landed him on his butt after the Nutmeg. Even the commentators on the ‘Barcelona Directe’ broadcast of the game couldn’t help but let out an “oof” at the filthy piece of skill.
It took Almendra merely two touches to drop 2 Barca players on the ground.
Adding to Barcelona’s disarray came the final result. They managed to lose their first opportunity at silverware this season following a penalty shootout after the conclusion of the 90 minutes.