In fact if you think he dived, I know you won’t be offended by this piece because your lack of ocular ability means you can’t even read it.
At the match, in real time, I thought Santi skinned his defender and was fouled for a clear penalty.
Admittedly our Number 19 was at the Clock End and I was in the Upper West towards the North Bank, but still…
Later on Saturday, after several pints taken and a fine curry, I had a quick look at it again on my laptop.
“Just as I suspected,” I said to myself: “A bang-on pen.”
Then on Sunday morning I read several reports of the match, I heard what the Match of the Day commentators said and I began to worry that I was using the old Rose Tinteds again (even Denilson looked good through those babies).
So when I wrote up the match report for Arsenal Arsenal I hedged my bets, saying: “The consensus seems to be that Santi dived. If so, I don’t approve but we’ve been on the wrong end of enough penalty-dives recently (Bale and Young last season to name but two) that I’m not going to lose sleep over it.”
Sunday was a busy day. I had people to do, things to go and places to see. So it wasn’t until late Sunday that I finally got round to properly watching the incident again.
I was expecting to see that, after all, it was a dive. Let’s face it, the media all say it was a dive and they don’t lie, do they?
So I got the incident up on the laptop again – full screen – and watched it LOTS of times. Not that I needed to. From my first viewing it was clear that Reid toe-ended Santi on the shin. Really hard.
Check for yourself.
On the close-up shot looking across from the direction of the West Stand you can see at the 5 second mark Reid’s wild swing hits Santi’s shin and changes direction. Not much, but enough to show there was contact.
I’m not in the slightest bit surprised that Santi went up in the air after being hit by that haymaker of a flailing foot.
Some might say there was no need for his other leg (the right) to go up in the air too. Maybe, maybe not. The exact effect of that contact on his body given the speed of his turn would be hard to judge.
But I have watched Cazorla play all season and he is not a diver
Of course it’s no surprise that the media want to demonise as a diver a foreign player who turns out in Arsenal colours. We’ve been round that block several times before haven’t we? While there’s seldom a whisper against Gerrard, Rooney and Bale.
Let’s be clear: Santi Cazorla was fouled and the referee got it right.
To say that there was no contact and that West Brom were robbed is the most patent rubbish.
Contact. Foul. Penalty. End of.
Get over it.