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#pounditWednesday, May 29, 2024

Robben admits to diving early in game against Mexico

Robben Rafael Marquez

Arjen Robben drew a controversial foul in the 88th minute against Mexico on Sunday to secure a spot in the World Cup quarterfinals for The Netherlands. Mexico were called for a foul inside the box with the score tied 1-1, and Klaas Huntelaar converted the ensuing penalty kick.

Did Robben flop to get the call? Most people feel that there was definitely contact from Rafael Marquez as Robben was making a move with the ball. It looked like Robben sold it a bit to make sure the official made the call, but anyone would have done the same in that situation. However, the 30-year-old forward admitted he did dive earlier in the match.

“It is something I shouldn’t have done,” Robben told reporters, via The Telegraph. “That one (in the 88th minute) was a penalty. But the other in the first half was a dive. I must apologize.”

The play Robben was referring to occurred in the first half when he fell to the turf outside the box and the referee made the signal to play on.

Not surprisingly, Mexico manager Miguel Carrera strongly disagreed with Robben’s assessment. He felt his squad was screwed by an “invented penalty.”

“It seems to me that the reason we were eliminated was the man with the whistle,” Herrera said. “Although their first goal was good and came from a mistake on our part, the game was heading to extra time. But if the referee invents a penalty of that size, you leave the World Cup after circumstances not created by you. And Robben dived three times for penalties that didn’t exist. He should have been cautioned. If you do that to the guy who tries to cheat, then he can’t cheat again.”

It’s certainly a shame that a round of 16 match ended like it did, but it seemed like a pretty clear foul. We have already had plenty of controversial calls that affect the outcomes of World Cup games, and we’ll probably have a few more before the tournament ends.

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