Carles Puyol: When Barcelona legend nearly broke Phil Neville's leg in 6-a-side game


Carles Puyol was a footballer who always gave 110% out on the pitch.

The no-nonsense Spaniard is one of the greatest defenders to have played the game, winning trophies galore at Barcelona.

Puyol’s aggressive style made him an absolute nightmare to come up against and many world-class strikers failed to get the better of him.

But while his combative nature was mostly a good thing, it did sometimes result in the legendary centre-back taking things a little too far.

That was certainly the case when Puyol played in the inaugural Star Sixes tournament way back in 2017.

The Barcelona icon was part of a star-studded Spain team that England 4-1 at the indoor ex-professionals event in London and during that game, Puyol was guilty of an absolutely horrendous tackle on Phil Neville.

Early on in the match, the former Manchester United left-back was on the wrong end of a potential leg-breaker from his opponent.

Amazingly, Puyol was not dismissed from the field of play by the referee, something that you’ll find even more incredible after watching footage of the challenge below.

Video: Puyol’s leg-breaker on Neville

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No, you do not need to adjust your screen, the official really thought that Puyol won the ball and subsequently let play continue.

Thankfully, Neville wasn’t seriously injured as a consequence of the awful tackle.

The ex-Everton player was unsurprisingly livid with the Spaniard’s reckless actions and he made his feelings on the matter very clear.

“It’s the worst tackle I’ve ever seen on a football field,” Neville told Sky Sports. “I hope UEFA, FIFA and the FA all have a look at this.

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“The thing that upset me more than anything was the referee said he got the ball! Honestly, it was a horrendous tackle.”

Puyol did actually apologise to Neville on Twitter after the Englishman posted footage of the incident on the social media platform.

His reply read: “Sorry man!! I hope your knee is fine. I didn’t mean to do it.”

Well, at least that’s something…

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