It took five matches for him to settle in and become comfortable enough to be himself, but Nigel De Jong did his first Nigel De Jong in MLS during the LA Galaxy’s 1–1 draw with the Portland Timbers. The Dutch midfielder was only shown a yellow card for connecting with Darlington Nagbe’s ankle on a tackle that forced Nagbe to leave the match.
— Julie Stewart-Binks (@JSB_TV) April 11, 2016
De Jong later provided his warped view of the situation (via MLSsoccer.com):
“It was a 50–50 ball,” de Jong said postgame. “Normally, I always have those balls. I went over to the ball and catch the ball a little bit and catch most of his ankle. It was a pity, you know what I mean? It was never my intention to hurt him.”
Of course, De Jong has a history of destroying the ankles of U.S. internationals. Back in 2010, he did it to Stu Holden.
This has been the Dirty Tackle of the Day: a chronicling of unfortunate events.