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Because Suarez is not that ugly .. why does the athlete cheat?

Some impressions are indelible, and some impressions the owner does not attempt to erase at all. When we all heard that Luis Suarez, the Barcelona striker at the time, had cheated on the Italian language test needed to complete his transfer to Juventus, there is a reason why we were not surprised, as this seems like Luis Suarez’s behavior. (1)

We are not talking about his technical quality, as the man repeated it in his first minutes with an Atlético de Madrid shirt, but he is simply this type of player: a player who will not shy away from doing anything to win, things like acting to get penalty kicks, or playing roughly up to hitting opponents intentionally. Talking about someone who had previously implanted his teeth in the shoulder of three opponents, would it seem strange if he tried to pass the test by cheating?

The sporting world looks very beautiful, look at the tennis match that ended with that handshake, watch how sportsmanship wafts from all sides of the stadium, it is an honest fight whose parties seek to win within the limits of the law that protects these competitions. Nonsense, yes, there are still those who believe in this, there are still those who warn the referee of the football match if he made a wrong decision in his favor, there are those who shake hands with his opponent after the match, regardless of the result without hate, but whenever some scenes float to the surface, we cannot accept 100 % That this is prevalent.

Everything that appears from time to time from the rotten scenes of events we saw the first time as an honest sporting competition does not make us contemplate the enormity of what we just knew, but rather the enormity of what we do not know yet, or rather what we may never know. For example, this story of Suarez was the result of a coincidence in one way or another, the Uruguayan striker got the test questions before he entered, but perhaps his only mistake was that he had obtained them from a university already subject to police control since February 2020. (2)

This was confirmed by Colonel Silvadgio Sarri – and this is just the similarity of names – the leader of the investigations in this file, thanks to the “non-transparent” activities carried out by some of the University of Perugia officials, which led to their phones being placed under surveillance that picked up words like: “We cannot spoil a deal It is worth 10 million euros per season due to a B1 level test, and now Juventus is under investigation due to other calls between one of his lawyers and a university official about this test, and what a farce, they are driving Juventus to the investigation because of a recorded call about a language test? Type “Recorded Calls” now? Times have really changed. (3)

Yes, it seems very trivial to enter into comparison, the last time Juventus was put in a similar situation there were calls between his manager Luciano Modgi and the head of the Referees Committee, which led him to withdraw two titles from his treasury and send him to the second division in one of the most famous scandals in football and sports in general. It can be said that the boom that we are living in on all levels has reduced the possibility of manipulation without disclosing the manipulator, or at the very least it restricted the manipulator in a narrower scale in spaces further away from the eyes, but before all this development, before there were thousands of media outlets to shed light on The scandal, and before there were hundreds of technological means to discover tampering during and sometimes before it happened, how was the situation? (4)

Luis Suarez

Over time, and in every historical era, there was a scandal here or there, a cheater caught red-handed, a cheat whose act was later revealed, and of course, a cheat died without our name being known to this day. Details range from funny to disgusting. Since we started with Calciopoli, here is her sister from the world of baseball in 1919: the “Black Socks” scandal, or “Say it’s not like that, Joe.” The last phrase came from a young fan of the Chicago White Sox team to the star of his team, Joe Jackson, after the news emerged that the team was sold to the World Cup finals after losing despite being the first candidate, and for the flag “World Cup” here is synonymous with a purely American championship, but this is not our topic now.

To get a quick grip on the situation, the insane money available in baseball now didn’t exist in the first quarter of the twentieth century. Another star for this team is Eddie Sikkot, and his coach promised him $ 10,000 if he wins 30 games, and after he achieved the 29th victory, the coach sat him on the bench, so when he found someone who paid him the same amount, he did not mind selling, being one of 8 players who were convicted. By the end of that scandal in 1920. Also among these eight was Claude “Lefty” Williams, who was subjected to personal threats if he did not give up the match. The whole thing was managed for the account of the bettors, and this is how the lust for material profit controlled the path of people and their decisions, as is usual in any other activity on this planet. (5)

Back to the athletes themselves, there is Fred Lores, the marathon champion in the 1904 Olympiad, who had already taken his memorial photo with the daughter of US President Theodore Roosevelt and almost received his gold medal, before everyone discovered that he had cut 11 miles of the marathon in a car! There is the Russian Boris Onishchenko, the modern pentathlon champion, who placed wires and a transformer inside his sword handle that allowed him to close the circuit in his opponent’s robe. Points are counted in that duel when the tip of the sword strikes this garment, but Onishenko’s method allowed him to get points without even touching it. (6)

Doubts about the language test that Suarez underwent actually began because he passed the test in less time than usual, and this is exactly what afflicted runner Rosie Ruiz, champion of the 1980 Boston Marathon, as she finished the race 20 minutes behind her previous best. Rosie raised a lot of suspicion, but she was hit by a photojournalist who met Rosie by chance on the subway! (7)

We also have Canadian Ben Johnson, one of the most famous runners in history, who won the final race in the 1988 Olympics, and later it became clear that he had taken a steroid stimulant, and then his coach Charlie Francis admits that he gave steroids to 11 athletes who were training under his leadership, “because everyone in a world Sports was doing that! ” Strange justification? Absolutely, all of the participants in the 1988 race, the subject of this controversy, have been found to have taken doping at some point in their careers. (5) (7)

Johnson, like many athletes, fell under scrutiny thanks to doping tests, but ten years before him, cycling champion Michel Poulantier was uniquely slipped not because of what the analysis found in his urine, but because of the urine itself. The man raised suspicions in 1978 while presenting the sample by moving his elbows strangely, so the official asked him to lift his shirt, to find a pump and a thin tube, and Paula did not belong to him! (6)

There is the famous equestrian champion Sylvester Carmouche, who took advantage of the fog in 1990 and finished the race from outside the track, and there is the Spain Paralympic basketball team in the category of people with mental needs for the summer games in 2000, which caused the entire class of intellectual disabilities challengers to be suspended for two sessions after the discovery The organizing committee determined that 10 out of 12 players had no disability at all. (6) (7)

Let us leave these children’s games and turn to the “other” aspects, and you are free to control word formation. On January 6, 1994, American figure skating star Nancy Kerrigan was attacked by an unknown man with an iron stick that severely damaged her knees and forced her to miss the United States championship. It later emerged that the mastermind of this attack was Jeff Gillooly, husband of Tonya Harding, the 1994 USA Champion! Harding’s crime turned from an individual case to a collective one, when it emerged in March 2012 that the American football team New Orleans Saints had a bylaw to reward its players for “deliberately injuring opponents,” involving 27 of the team’s players. (5)

It is easy to say that Suarez is not the first and he will not be the last, he is not the first even in the field of academic cheating, there are 23 athletes at the University of Florida who did the same thing in 2007, in ways that varied from teachers helping them during the test and in one of the cases reached another person undergoing the test On behalf of his colleague. Simply put, the matter can be attributed to the nature of athletes that logically prefers sport to study, as Suarez does not need to conjugate the correct verbs in order to score goals with Juventus, all he really needs to learn about the Italian language is insults. (8)

But one way or another, it seems as if everyone has done something to win, perhaps we find ourselves doing something to win even if the competition means nothing at all, just a friendly game between friends in a cafe. From here begins Aurora University’s analysis of the “psychology of mathematical fraud”. (9)

The psychology of cheating in sport is a complex topic, and researchers continue to learn about what drives people to break the rules, whether by using steroids or by any means of cheating, but in any case, the main reason why people cheat in sport is not that complicated at all. Levels, the difference between first and second place may be a few million dollars and a significant amount of fame. This is why some athletes consider winning the only thing, and for them, the returns in money and fame are worth the risk by exposing them and stigmatizing them as cheaters.

The issue is divided into two main axes, the first of which is the natural drive to win, based on the saying that “winning is not everything, it is the only thing.” In an inherently competitive environment such as sports, it is not surprising that some people try to take steps further than their peers. According to the “Sports Psychology Handbook”, that competitive sometimes puts individuals in self-conflict situations, in which victory is usually tilted over sportsmanship and fair play.

Handbook of Sport Psychology

As for the second axis, it is directly related to the ego and how ethics work in the human psyche, as it starts from how individuals think about themselves and determine their true motives for practicing sport, and here the athletes are divided into those whose thinking in their tasks leads them to focus on hard work and continuous development, and those who are motivated by them. Ego is to believe that skill is innate, so that their only concern is to become better than everyone else, or in other words in other cases, to be told that they are better than everyone else.

According to the “Sports Psychology Handbook”, studies have proven the existence of a link between the athlete’s belonging to one of the two categories and his relationship with sportsmanship and ethics. Egoists always have the lowest levels of commitment to sportsmanship, and sometimes it is not sufficient for them to practice cheating, but to support and support him publicly. In other words, there is an inverse relationship between ego and ethics, the higher the level of one, the lower the level of the other within the same person.

Another study in behavior and social cognition refutes the prevailing notion that the cheater feels guilty after engaging in unethical behavior. In 6 experiments, unethical actions not only failed to elicit a negative feeling, but aroused a positive feeling within them that is more like euphoria. This study goes from here to the fact that most ethical decisions are made secretly and are more difficult to observe. Consequently, whoever can extract both material and psychological benefit at the same time from cheating becomes more motivated and willing to take an unethical action in order to win.

Everyone knows the story of Lance Armstrong, the famous cycling hero who lost everything due to exposing the cheating. He was stripped of all his achievements and titles, and legal expenses cost him more than $ 100 million, of which he paid the authorities only 5 million dollars in punishment. But looking at it from the other side, that money is clearly less than what we cheated on. According to Bloomberg in 2013, Armstrong’s revenues exceeded $ 218 million, and in the glory of his career, Forbes estimated his annual revenue at $ 28 million.

Was it worth it? Was he worth the cheating, doping, and the bad reputation that would haunt him even after his death? If he took him back in time, would he have done the same again? Lance Armstrong’s answer was this: “If I were racing in 2015, no, because I don’t think I would have to. But if you took me back to 1995 when it was all over, maybe I would do it again.” This fulfills the purpose of telling us about this world in which we live, and now tell us if cheating on an Italian language test still sounds that awful. (9)



  1. Suarez accused of cheating on the Italian language test
  2. Police investigations and records regarding the test
  3. Juventus is under investigation due to lawyer contacts
  4. Calciopoli scandal
  5. How Stuff Works Report on Sports Cheating Scandals
  6. The Guardian Report on Sports Cheating Scandals
  7. Culture Trip report on sports fraud scandals
  8. University of Florida athletes were implicated in test cheating
  9. Aurora University on the Psychology of Mathematical Fraud

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