Winning is neither everything nor the only thing, as far as Aaron Hunt is concerned.
The German soccer player is basking in widespread praise for his stunning display of sportsmanship (or “fair play”) during a Bundesliga game between Nürnberg and Werder Bremen on Saturday.
Werder Bremen was leading 2-0 in the 75th minute when referee Hunt Manuel Graefe awarded Werder Bremen a penalty kick after Nurenberg defender Javier Pinola appeared to foul Hunt.
Rather than accept the chance for his team to score a certain game-winning goal, Hunt convinced Graefe to overturn his decision, according to Bundesliga.com.
“He (the referee) pointed to the spot quite quickly, and I told him that I’d actually contrived it slightly,” Hunt said after the game. “I did look for the contact, but then I noticed that their defender pulled out of the challenge. I fought with my conscience for a bit, but I never wanted to win that way. I’ve got to say I looked up at the clock a lot more often than usual in those final ten minutes.”
Graefe awarded a drop-ball instead of the penalty kick, and visiting Werder Bremen held its two-goal lead for the final 15 minutes to seal the victory.
Hunt, 27, will surely be a contender for the 2014 FIFA Fair Play award after this gesture.
Watch Hunt’s display of good sportsmanship in the video below.