Posts Tagged ‘Opinion’

What’s in this can? Oh it’s just a load of worms!

Diving is cheating

I don’t need to tell you that. Every week we see a professional footballer throw himself to the floor in attempt to gain an advantage. The media love it as they can get a lot of mileage out of it and some players then become “notorious” divers

However I find the fact Arsenal’s Eduardo has been banned for two games is farcical (at least)

Short piece on the site

The UEFA Control and Disciplinary Body today examined the case of the Arsenal FC player Eduardo "for deceiving the referee" during the UEFA Champions League play-off second leg match on 26 August against Celtic FC, and has suspended the player for two UEFA club competition matches.

Appeal deadline
This decision may be appealed against by the club or player within three working days of the dispatch of the reasoned decision.

TwoFootedTackle has a great opinion on this which you should go and read

There are lots of reasons why I take umbrage with this

1) Why now?

If Uefa, Fifa, whoever had announced at the start of the season that they were clamping down on diving and that they would be using video evidence to retrospectively punish players then fine. But why at the end of the Arsenal game? When we get to the next set of games will they do it again if someone else dives?

2) Pick a punishment

Generally players get booked during the game if the referee decides they have dived they get a yellow card. If they do again during the same game they’ll get another yellow card, followed by a red which means a one game ban

Two dives in one game equals one game ban

In the Champions League you get banned for picking up three yellow cards.

So three dives in three different games equals a one game ban

So why have Uefa decide a two game ban is appropriate?

If he had decided during the game it was a dive then it would have been a yellow card. No more

So either the referee didn’t see it or he didn’t think it was a dive. How do Uefa get to a two game ban?

3) Deciding what is a dive

There has been a lot of debate about whether Eduardo actually dived or not and he is the only person who knows 100% for sure

Every time diving gets discussed there is a lot of talk about players moving so fast that it doesn’t take much to knock them over. I can agree with that so how do we actually know when someone is intentionally diving or not?

Here are some good examples from the next game Arsenal played in against Manchester United

There have been some suggestions that Rooney dived to win this penalty

What I think this is an example of winning a penalty. Rooney and Almunia are racing for a ball. Rooney gets there just ahead of the keeper knowing that if he can just get it away from the keeper he’s going to get taken out. Obviously he doesn’t make any attempt to stay on his feet for maximum effect

I do think it’s a penalty but I can certainly see why Arsenal fans would be unhappy with it

In contrast with Eboue. (about 20 seconds into the video) who comes inside Evra, realises Carrick is there and throws himself over. Surely Mr Wenger would have been telling his players in the build up to the game that they needed to be on their best behaviour?

That’s my take on it all

Diving does need to be stamped out but it’s not a black and white subject (unlike goal line decisions…but that’ll keep for another time) and any punishment needs to be consistent so everyone knows where they stand

While we’re talking about a penalty in the Manchester United vs Arsenal game. I think Darren Fletcher’s tackle on Andrey Arshavin was easily a penalty


Time for an opinion piece I think

Over on the BBC News site Phil McNulty talks about Rafa Benitez and Martin O’Neill in the fallout from there game at the weekend (Liverpool 1 – 3 Aston Villa)

He talks about how O’Neill was irked by Villa fans booing them off at half time

I’m inclined to agree with the statement he made

"I said at the time if you are booed off at the end of the game when you have not played well and you deserve that then fine, but I was disconcerted by it at half-time against Wigan. I didn’t hear Liverpool being booed off at half-time when they were two goals down here."


I’ve always thought booing your team during a game to be counter productive. Don’t get me wrong if your team isn’t performing as you’d expect them to I think you are more than entitled to let them know about it. I just think if you do it during the game it doesn’t help

Having seen my own team fight relegation battles, I’ve seen this first hand. I remember going to a “must win six pointer” at home. After 20 minutes we hadn’t scored and the opposition we’re getting the upper hand. During a promising attack a ball got played wide, the winger mis-controlled the ball and he had to watch it trickle out of play

That was breaking point some of the crowd and the boos started.

Where this then becomes a problem is that the winger stopped attacking his full back. Every time the ball into him he played it simple, back into midfield or to the full back behind him. He stopped taking risks as you don’t get booed for keeping possession right? It ruins some young players as it creeps into the next game and they slowly become ordinary players

This then spreads through the team and no-one tries anything out of the ordinary and the chances quickly dried up

I don’t think the players do this automatically. It’s just human nature.

Can you imagine trudging off a pitch at half time and having thousands of people booing you. If you are loosing a game half time is when you can collect your thoughts, think about what went wrong and get yourself into the frame of mind to perform better. If your thinking about not getting booed this isn’t going to help

Some players can use it as motivation, some can’t. Again that’s just human nature

Next time you are at a game and your team isn’t doing so well or the promising young winger cheaply gives away possession. Get behind them. Cheer louder. You are a SUPPORTER aren’t you?

If after the final whistle you still think they need to know they haven’t played well then boo all you like