Incase the world has forgotten: Cristiano Ronaldo is not the only diver

Tony MantonContributor ISeptember 30, 2008

Ahhhhhh the art of diving. No I am not referring to those hairless boys standing 20 feet high on a platform ready to plunge into the frigid waters of your local swimming pool.

I'm talking about grown men flipping and flopping around on the most sacred of football fields as though they have been shot by a sniper hiding in the nosebleeds. Men who are making 10 million pounds a season to score goals, entertain the fans and most of all respect their opponents and the game we all know and love.

I will be the first to admit, Cristiano Ronaldo dives. He has dove before.  



He will certainly dive again.

While watching the Manchester United game this weekend as Ronaldo went to ground in the Bolton box, I couldn't help but wonder how long it was going to take for everyone to start coming down on Ronaldo for winning a penalty....that was not a penalty.

Did he dive ? No. But he fell.

He was not making his usual cries for help, shouting and whining.

No, he was sitting there, as surprised as the next man. As any other player in any other league would have done, he stepped up and converted the penalty spot.

For years, I have sat back and watched Ronaldo become public enemy number one for his theatric's, for his tendency to go to ground easily.

And for years, I have sat back and wondered why it was only Ronaldo being criticized so viciously for going to ground so easily.

The EPL may be just as bad as any other league in the world for this.


Chelsea is home to some of the worst divers in the EPL. With the like of Didier Drogba, Michael Ballack and Deco. These players will go to ground with just the slightest gust of wind blowing in their direction. Hell, sometime's Drogba just like to go for a leap of faith when no one is near. Yet, still looking for a penalty.
But for some reason, we dont critisize him ?

Arsenal, home to many Spanish players of course were not free of this, numerous occasions I sat back and watched Thierry Henry win free kicks and penalty decisions all because he had perfected the art of the dive.


You need not look any further than a match between France and Italy, pick one. Any one.

I've watched a few, and cant believe that Ronaldo is thought of as the biggest diver we see in football.

Would Ronaldo be criticized so much for this if he were in Italy ? Spain ?

Probably not.

It's the English media that has got everyone thinking Ronaldo is the one that invented the art-form of diving. When in hindsight, it's the culture in which players are being brought up now from Portugal, France, Spain, Italy and even England.

So next time when everyone is so quick to jump the gun and scream at their television set at Ronaldo to get up and stop diving, they might consider doing it at the other players who are just as guilty.