150 People Made Money From This Bite
On Wednesday morning, FIFA opened proceedings to investigate Uruguay striker Luis Suarez for allegedly biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during the Uruguay-Italy match Tuesday. If you're unfamiliar with Suarez, you're probably thinking "What the hell?" If you've been following Suarez's career for a while now, you're probably thinking "No surprise there." And if you're part of a group of Europeans so confident Suarez would bite someone that they bet on it, you're probably saying, "Great! Pay up."
This is not the first time Suarez has bitten an opponent, making the bet a fairly safe one. In fact, you're more likely to get bitten by Suarez than a shark. The Twitter account Uber Football Fact has been providing some enlightening insights into Suarez's past: This is Suarez's second time trying to bite Chiellini. About a year ago, he went for it and missed. In 2010, Suarez was accused of biting another player, and just last year he faced a 10-match ban for biting someone during a game.
Incidentally, all three of these games were victories for Uruguay. On Tuesday, about a minute after the bite, Uruguay sealed the deal with a winning goal. Hey, if it works....
Although this is the third time Suarez has been accused of biting another player — to jump on the bad joke train the incident has inspired — it's the first time he's sampled Italian.
According to USA Today, over 150 people in Europe bet that Saurez would bite someone during the World Cup. These folks won big. Two of the biggest winners were Norwegian, raking in $3,300 and $916, respectfully. Thomas Syverson, from Trondheim, Norway, bet about $4 and walked away with the $916 prize. Syverson was actually sleeping when the bite occurred, but watched the lucky moment as it was replayed. Syverson described the moment to Norway's largest newspaper, AftenPosten, as being "pretty special."
"For me it was a success," Syverson said. "So I'm happy."
Syverson plans to spend some of the money on a birthday gift for his girlfriend. From Suarez's teeth, with love.
Most of the bets were orchestrated through the Swedish gambling group, Betsson. A spokesman from Betsson told the Associated Press that they received bets as large as "six-figures in Norwegian kroner." These people were confident that Suarez would deliver.
FIFA is investigating the incident, although the video seems to paint a pretty clear picture of what happened. If Suarez is found guilty, he will be banned from at least two matches and at most 24. FIFA President, and total jerk, Sepp Blatter, has said that he takes poor sportsmanship very seriously. "Fair play, discipline, respect,” in the words of the man who has been accused of both sexism and racism.
This hearing may be a chance for him to put that mantra into practice. If Suarez is suspended, it could present a challenge for Uruguay...and for all those fans in Europe hoping to cash in on his next bite.