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Sportsmanship Prevails in English Soccer Match

Often lost in the sports world today is the act of sportsmanship. The glitz, glamor and pageantry of sports, coupled with a dwindling sense of loyalty, has led to many players, coaches and managers to worry only about themselves and the next win or loss.

But, there are occasions where sportsmanship overcomes all — just like the ending of Saturday’s League One soccer match between Doncaster Rovers and Bury FC.

A Bury player went down with an injury in the waning minutes of the third-tier English match. As is customary, a Doncaster midfielder kicked the ball to Bury’s goaltender to give that team a goal kick to resume play.

However, things did not go exactly as planned.

The goal put Doncaster up 1-0.

With the game about to end following a goal they were not trying to score, Doncaster allowed Bury to walk down the pitch and score unimpeded for the equalizer.

“I didn’t really think twice about allowing them to equalise. It just wouldn’t have been right for us to take three points in the circumstances,” Doncaster manager Paul Dickov told the BBC. “It was just an unfortunate ending to the game. Harry Forrester hit the ball too sweet and I was just hoping it wouldn’t go in.

“When it did we just had to allow them to score because you can’t win a game like that.”

It was an act rarely seen in today’s sports world, but one that was appreciated.

“Paul put football in a good place with his sportsmanship,” Bury manager David Flitcroft told the BBC. “Because if you lose morality the game has no substance for me.”

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