Matteo Darmian accidentally killed a bird during Man United's pre-season friendly
Pre-season is full of all sorts of weird stuff.
Cricket scorelines, clubs flying 2000 miles to play on terrible pitches, 16-year-olds nutmegging world class players, own goals from 40 yards; pre-season can be truly bizarre. Manchester United's latest pre-season outing was a perfect example of post-World Cup summer weeks throwing up some bizarre events, as Matteo Darmian accidentally killed a live bird while playing against the San Jose Earthquakes.
Yep, killed it. Dead. The poor thing. I mean, Darmian will not have been aware that the bird was in that position as he struck the ball, and he did not intend for this bird to die. I can't emphasise this point enough. It was an accident. But still, it happened.
As the ball rolled across the gleaming California grass towards the United defender, and he prepared to wallop it upfield, the terrified bird quickly takes flight. That turned out to be a grave mistake, as Darmian's clearance collided with the bird, ending its life. San Jose's number nine then went to pick up the injured bird, before looking at it and realising that he'd actually rather not.