(screencap via The Telegraph)
If you're going to blatantly dive during a match, the very least you can do is not admit it to the South American press several months later. That seems to be the message in Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers' decision to reprimand and punish Luis Suarez for telling Fox Sports Argentina that he was guilty of comically "falling" inside the box on purpose to win a penalty in Liverpool's 0-0 draw against Stoke in October (gif here).
Said Suarez (via the BBC):
"I was accused of falling inside the box in a match, and it's true I did it that time, because we were drawing against Stoke at home and we needed anything to win it.
"But after that everybody jumped out to talk - the Stoke coach and the Everton coach [David Moyes] - but the name Suarez sells [papers]."
After the match, Stoke manager Tony Pulis called for The FA to punish Suarez for the flop, while Rodgers claimed he didn't see the incident and labeled Suarez's performance as "terrific."
But now Suarez has broken the first rule of dive club and Rodgers isn't happy.
"I think it's wrong. It's unacceptable. I've spoken to Luis and it will be dealt with internally," he said.
"Diving is not something we advocate. Our ethics are correct.
"He has been totally understanding on where I am coming from as manager of the club. What was said was wrong, he takes that and we move on."
In Rodgers' defense, he has been vocally anti-diving -- even if he has backed Suarez against the many accusations against him -- since taking over at Liverpool, as evidenced by his refrain of "just stay on your feet" to Jonjo Shelvey during a training session in the Being: Liverpool documentary. Of course, Suarez's fish flop against Stoke is just as clear now as it was at the time and the only difference is Suarez blabbing about it to the press like someone bragging about trying to rob a bank because he needed money. So the timing of Rodgers' stand makes it seem like he's more upset about Suarez's admission than the act itself.
Anyway, if we can just get players to publicly admit when they dive straight away instead of three months later in an interview released on another continent, we might start making some progress here.
- Sports & Recreation
- Swimming & Diving