English Premiership

Bale irked by 'diving' cards

2012-12-29 21:12
Gareth Bale (AP)

London - Gareth Bale says he does not deserve his reputation as a diver, despite being shown his fifth yellow card for simulation in 16 months in Tottenham Hotspur's 2-1 win at Sunderland on Saturday.

Bale was one of the outstanding players on show at the Stadium of Light but he was booked by referee Martin Atkinson in the 81st minute after going down under a challenge from Sunderland's Craig Gardner.

His every touch thereafter was jeered by the home fans but the Welshman, who scored his first Premier League hat-trick against Aston Villa on Wednesday, said the referee had made a mistake.

It was the third time Bale has been booked for diving this season and means he will miss his side's home game with Reading on New Year's Day due to suspension after accumulating five yellow cards.

"That's the third time now I've been clipped and booked for no reason again," said Bale.

"There's nothing I can do - the referees need to look a bit closer. People think I'm diving when there's contact.

"If there's contact, it's a penalty or free-kick, there's nothing I can do. If there's contact, what do you want me to do - hit my head on the floor?

"I have to put my hands down to protect myself. If people kick me, I'm going to go down.

"It doesn't bother me. People keep saying I'm diving, but it doesn't bother me whatsoever. It's a foul and I know it myself."

Television replays showed that Gardner's knee made contact with Bale's right leg as the former Southampton player sped past him into the Sunderland area, but the Wales international went down in theatrical fashion.

Bale has been shown five yellow cards for diving since the start of the 2011-12 season.

No other player has more than two cautions for the same offence in that time, but Spurs coach Andre Villas-Boas believes the 23-year-old is being unfairly singled out.

"It was a big mistake from the referee," he said.

"I understand that reputations can sometimes be created on the outside through the media or situations on the pitch, but it's a bit unfair.

"If you see the images, Gardner is not even focusing on the ball - he goes in and clips him.

"It doesn't mar the win, but Gareth was one game from being clean from yellow cards and it's extremely unfair that he misses Reading because of such a big mistake."

Read more on:    tottenham hotspur  |  gareth bale  |  soccer
NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
2 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
05 December 2016
Middlesbrough v Hull City, Riverside Stadium 22:00
10 December 2016
Watford v Everton, Vicarage Road Stadium 14:30
Arsenal v Stoke City, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Hull City v Crystal Palace, Kingston Communications Stadium 17:00
Swansea City v Sunderland, Liberty Stadium 17:00
Burnley v AFC Bournemouth, Turf Moor 17:00
Leicester City v Manchester City, King Power Stadium 19:30
11 December 2016
Chelsea v West Bromwich Albion, Stamford Bridge 14:00
Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur, Old Trafford 16:15
Southampton v Middlesbrough, St. Mary's Stadium 16:15
Liverpool v West Ham United, Anfield 18:30
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2016/17 season?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.