Mikel Obi sides with Matuidi

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Nigeria midfielder John Mikel Obi says a yellow card was the fair punishment for Blaise Matuidi for his tackle on Ogenyi Onazi.

The Frenchman’s ill-timed challenge left the Nigeria midfielder with a fractured ankle, which required a cast and is expected to keep him out of action for at least six weeks.

But despite widespread condemnation from home, and strong words from Argentina legend Diego Maradona, Mikel has risen to the defence of the French international ‘Matuidi is not a dirty player,” Mikel told KickOffNigeria.com. “I don’t think he did it deliberately.

“They were both boing for the ball, but Onazi was faster and got there first, and then Matuidi caught him. It was a mistake.

“I feel sorry for Onazi because the injury looked very serious and he had to miss the rest of the game. Maybe things would have been different if he had continued playing, I don’t know.

“But I think the yellow card was enough punishment for him.”

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