Charlie Morgan: The Ballboy Eden Hazard Kicked

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January 23rd, 2013, under the floodlights in Swansea, a Capital One Cup semi-final clash between Chelsea and Swansea was played but an incident involving 17-year-old ballboy Charlie Morgan would become the talk of world football.

 A cold Wednesday night in South Wales, Swansea were leading 2-0 on aggregate after a park the bus win at Stamford Bridge two weeks earlier, where goals from Michu and Danny Graham gave Swansea a deserved win, and things were going to plan in the second leg. Headlines of Swansea reaching a first major cup final in their 100 year history were rightly being drafted. But this would change in the 80th minute when the ball would go out for goal kick.

Image: PA

Chelsea winger Eden Hazard was eager for a quick restart but instead of retrieving the ball, he kicked 17-year-old Morgan who to rolled around in pain, holding his ribs as the crowd voiced their displeasure. Moments later Chris Foy gave Hazard a straight red card. The incident went viral and broadcasted across all of social media. The Belgian man was handed a three match ban. Hazard, sent out apologies to the teenager ball-boy in an interview with Chelsea TV.

“The boy put his whole body on to the ball and I was just trying to kick the ball.”

“I think I kicked the ball and not the boy. I apologise. The ballboy came in the changing room and we had a quick chat. I apologised and the boy apologised as well, and it is over. Sorry.”

Hazard

Charlie broke his silence on Twitter.

His following on Twitter increased by approximately 15,000% to over 100,000 and, to this day, the former Swansea City ballboy remains verified on the platform.

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15:00

Preston vs Stoke

Both Teams To Score

Stoke will be wanting a better result here following a 0-2 Championship losing effort in their last game against Bristol City. Both teams could end up scoring in what appears to be a good match-up, with little separating these two teams. Stoke have not beaten Preston North End when they’ve played them away from home in the last 4 league games, however come into this game with a decent away record, unbeaten in their last 3 Championship away games. Both teams have scored in the last 4 fixtures that have taken place at Preston.

15:00

Barnsley vs Coventry

Both Teams To Score

Barnsley will be eager to make amends for back-to-back losses to Luton and Reading and should stand a good chance against Coventry. They do however have a slightly weakened side with defenders Michal Helik and Mads Juel Andersen both sidelined through suspension. The Sky Blues, proved their worth in a 3-2 win over Queens Park Rangers but they do tend to produce much better showings at home than on the travels. Bearing this in mind, we think both teams will get on the scoresheet.

15:00

Derby vs Blackburn

Over 2.5 Goals

The Rams made a slow start to the season, with the team suffering back-to-back defeats to Reading and Luton in the league. Blackburn contrastingly rolled over Wycombe 5-0 to climb to the top half of the standings and will be brimming with confidence ahead of the trip to Derby. Their most recent H2H saw Derby win 3-0 at home. We think we will see maximum attacking effort from both sides.

15:00

Birmingham vs Rotherham

Birmingham To Win Either Half

Birmingham have been impressive at the back since the start of the season, with the team eyeing their 3rd consecutive clean sheet in the Championship. Rotherham kicked off the new Championship campaign with a 1-0 win at Wycombe, but failed to impress in a 1-0 loss to Millwall at the weekend. From the last 5 H2Hs, Birmingham have won 3 and 2 have ended in draws, but both teams have scored in 4 of the last 5 matches. Birmingham should be able to win at least one half.

15:00

Crewe vs MK Dons

Over 2.5 Goals

This fixture against MK Dons will be anything but a walk in the park for the newcomers to League 1, Crewe. The home side haven’t lost 3 consecutive league matches since March 2019 and will be looking to rely on their trusty home form to get their campaign up and running. MK Dons earned an impressive point at Doncaster on the opening day, but arrive in Cheshire bidding to end a 15-game run without an away League One victory which they could very well get against this newly promoted side.

15:00

Ipswich vs Rochdale

Ipswich Over 1.5 Goals

Ipswich begin the weekend top of the League One standings and are looking to add a 3rd league victory for this season. The Tractor Boys have already moved into one of the favourites for promotion and will expected another three points here. Rochdale are still looking for their first League One victory of the season and are struggling for goals in the absence of the departed Ian Henderson.

15:00

Northampton vs Hull

Both Teams To Score

Hull City will be looking to keep their 100% record intact when they take on Northampton Town. Hull City are eyeing a quick return to the Championship, and we are positive that they will adopt an attack-minded approach in Saturday’s football match. These teams share the stat of both teams having scored in 3 of the last 5 games.

15:00

Fleetwood Town vs AFC Wimbledon

Fleetwood Town Over 1.5 Goals

Fleetwood are undefeated in 13 of their last 14 home matches in League 1. There have been over 2.5 goals scored in Fleetwood’s last 5 games and in a lot of case Fleetwood have scored over 1.5 of those goals. Wimbledon have been scoring goals for fun at the start of the season, but their defence has been anything but solid to date so we should see goals all round.

15:00

Port Vale vs Harrogate Town

Both Teams To Score

These teams have not faced each other before but Port Vale are undefeated in their last 9 home league matches, a run that they’ll hope to extend here. Harrogate Town have been scored against in 5 of their last 6 matches, conceding 9 goals in all. Defensively, they just haven’t been too solid at all so the Valiants stand a good chance of a win here. However, coming into this clash, Harrogate Town are unbeaten in their previous 6 away league matches and certainly have the ability to score a goal against this Port Vale lineup.

15:00

Cambridge United vs Tranmere Rovers

Double Chance: Cambridge United Or Draw

The home side come into this match with a much better run of form than their visitors. Coming into this meeting, Cambridge United have not registered a win against Tranmere Rovers in their last 4 matches in the league but this could change or at least see things end all square. We think a draw is quite likely but the home side stand a chance of recording a win with their current form and momentum. We are set for a close game here.

Returns and odds correct at time of publishing.