France’s Blaise Matuidi has apologized for the horror tackle with sent midfielder Ogenyi Onazi out of the game and collapsed Nigeria’s midfield during the teams’ clash at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
Just before an hour had been played, the Paris Saint-Germain midfielder challenged the Lazio player in the centre of the field but was late to the ball and caught Onazi on the ankle – a blow that ended the 21-year-old’s involvement and left Nigeria boss Stephen Keshi fuming.
Matuidi, who was only shown a yellow card for the tackle, has confessed that the challenge was a poor one but has protested that there was no intent to injure the Super Eagles man.
“I’m sorry,” he told the media after the game. “I’ve not gone in to hurt him; I’m disappointed because I’m not a dirty player.
“I went into the [Nigeria] dressing room afterwards to apologise.”