Dive or No Dive? Vote on Diego Costa, Leighton Baines and Luca Antonelli

Karl MatchettFeatured ColumnistJanuary 28, 2014

MADRID, SPAIN - JANUARY 11:  Diego Costa of Atletico de Madrid sits on the ground after failing to score during the La Liga match between Club Atletico de Madrid and FC Barcelona at Vicente Calderon Stadium on January 11, 2014 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

It's that time of the week again, where we scour the game for not the best performances, goals and matches, but the scarred underbelly of the football world, the contentious, the downright wrong...the dive.

Or, at least, we've got a few instances of players attempting to con the referee during the last few days' worth of games.

Sometimes players get away with it, sometimes they're booked. On occasion they are inexplicably ignored by referees, who have enough to be getting on with in tight and tense games as it is.

We've picked out three potential instances of diving for you to take a look at this week, with one or two of the biggest names in the game involved too. Vote now on whether you think the players involved have tried to "buy" a foul or not.

 

Exhibit A: Diego Costa vs. Athletic Bilbao

Andres Kudacki/Associated Press

Diego Costa ran a dangerous game in the recent Copa del Rey fixture for his Atletico Madrid side against Athletic Bilbao.

The Brazilian-born striker, who still hopes to play for Spain at the World Cup in the summer, had already been booked earlier on in the game when he took a tumble over the half-outstretched leg of Carlos Gurpegi. The defender had in fact already seemed to step out of the tackle, though, and the referee did not blow for a foul on the Atleti striker.

However, neither did he show a second yellow to Costa.

Should he have?

 

Exhibit B: Leighton Baines vs. West Brom

WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND - JANUARY 20:  West Brom player Nicolas Anelka (r) challenges Leighton Baines of Everton during the Barclays premier league match between West Bromwich Albion and Everton at The Hawthorns on January 20, 2014 in West Bromwich, Englan
Stu Forster/Getty Images

Everton left-back Leighton Baines has celebrated winning a new contract this week, but in the Monday night Premier League game against West Brom he was winning something else—a debatable free kick.

Cutting inside the defender, Baines appeared to go to ground under little, if any contact whatsoever.

The referee awarded the foul to Everton on this occasion.

Everton ended up drawing this match 1-1 at West Brom, while a win would have seen them move into the top four in the league table.

VINE: Leighton Baines with the dive of the week - http://t.co/kPPY7dfxQz (Via @LFCVine).

— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 22, 2014

 

Exhibit C: Luca Antonelli vs. Fiorentina

GENOA, ITALY - JANUARY 19:  Luca Antonelli of Genoa CFC celebrates victorty at the end of the Serie A match between Genoa CFC and FC Internazionale Milano at Stadio Luigi Ferraris on January 19, 2014 in Genoa, Italy.  (Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Ima
Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

Over in Serie A, Fiorentina and Genoa put on a great game which finished 3-3, with Alberto Aquilani netting a splendid hat-trick to turn the game from 0-2 down to Fiorentina leading 3-2, before Genoa rescued a point late on.

Before all that, though, the opening goal of the game created plenty of debate as Genoa won a penalty after Luca Antonelli went tumbling to ground past goalkeeper Neto.

b/r

Alberto Gilardino scored the penalty, but should Genoa have been awarded one?