Everyone’s favourite foreigner, Cristiano Ronaldo, was again at the center of controversy yesterday having won a penalty that clearly wasn’t a penalty. However, you will not find me laying a single shed of blame on him for a decision that was clearly made by Mr Calamity himself, Robert Styles. No no, Ronaldo lost the ball after a fine tackle by Samuel and was inevitably grounded as you are in football. I was in the Stretford End and honestly thought that Ronaldo was going to get book for simulation, how wrong I was -along with 75,000 others.
The problem that I had with Ronaldo yesterday was his constant diving and slamming the floor when he didn’t get his way. We see it now and again from him, most noticeably against Wigan in the final game of the last season – where it looked like he was complaining about someone tackling him. Now, I have a number of views on what constitutes to diving (generally, people – in this country – believe if you’re young and foreign and you go to ground easy – you’re a diver and a cheat but when you’re older and British it’s ‘using your experience’) and I am a firm believer it needs to removed from the game – regardless of the fact if you think that you’re not getting enough protection. Dribblers are a rare breed in today’s game and there is no greater sight at Old Trafford that Ronaldo tearing down the wing beating man after man, but there comes a time when he has to realise that he can’t get his own way all the time.
Time after time he slammed the ground in frustration that a freekick wasn’t given and time after time Bolton broke on the counter. Now, with respect to Bolton, they’re not world beaters known for their fast moving attack minded football – which is why they didn’t capitalise on a number players being out of position when Ronaldo lost the ball. You could argue that Muamba should have scored late in the first half – which was a direct result of Ronaldo going to ground having lost the ball.
The lad has so many gifts, that we all know about, but his playacting was a burden yesterday and if we lose the ball high up the pitch against top opposition that can commit a number of men forward in a counter attack, we’ll be in trouble. So not only does this constitute to cheating, it also means that we could concede – if Ronaldo get annoyed. Do you think Ronaldo should cut this out of is it part and parcel of modern football? Do you think teams can pinpoint this as a weakness or do you think that i’m being unfair and Ronaldo was actually fouled yesterday?