Theo Walcott

Walcott admits he dived trying to win a penalty

The mixture of feelings at the final whistle was confusing. It’s been many years since I’ve been disappointed with a draw away to Arsenal and though the result is a massive achievement that can’t be taking away from the players, a 90th minute equaliser from the penalty spot will always hurt!

There was little doubt about that penalty – Ben Parker clearly made contact with Walcott. However, Arsenal had a similar claim just a few minutes before. Initially referee, Phil Dowd, pointed to the spot, judging contact had been made between Alex Bruce and Walcott, only for the referee’s assistant to flag for offside causing Dowd to reverse his decision.

Walcott has since admitted that he dived! Speaking to Talksport, he claims it was his first ever dive and that he had a “laugh and a joke” about it with the referee afterwards. Regardless of the fact the penalty wasn’t given in the end it is a hard fact to take that – in a game that rested so finely on tight decisions – Walcott has got away with a potentially game changing piece of cheating.

Although he claims Alex Bruce – who put in an immaculate performance – “was fine about it”. Had the linesman’s flag not gone up and saved everyone’s blushes there would certainly have been less laughing and joking.

Walcott has apologised for his actions and claims he isn’t happy with himself.  However, his admission does open up the debate for retrospective punishment yet again.

  • trueyorxman

    The thing is, on the interview is that he does’nt sound at all cocky about the incident, fair play to the kid in that respect. It was a penalty no doubt, as was the one a minute earlier, but would it have been given if Gibbs had have done the same to one of us at the other end? Doubt it. Arsenal FC have shown alot of class since the game ended…Wenger praising our performance…their official website giving a balanced view on the game…just proves they aren’t above themselves. Good luck to them I say, whatever the result in the replay. Well played boys by the way, LUFC keeping the spirit of the FA Cup alive single-handedly!

  • Victoria Concordia Crescit

    I have to say Leeds defended well and gave us a good match unlike Man Shitty. Your keeper looks good!
    I hope we win the replay of course but congratulations on the performance.

  • Teeth

    Is it me or is Bradley Johnson improving with every game of late? I thought the lads were magnificent today although Parker struggled a little at times which is expected after so long out.
    Fair play to Walcott for admitting to diving- I’m sure we would have taken one of ours doing it in the heat of such a game when there was some kind of contact.
    Overall a fair result and a payday will do us no harm- just give S.G the cash!

    • Colin

      @Teeth 100% agree, Bradley Johnson is looking better and better. He certainly doesn’t look like a player that wants to leave Leeds. I think SG should rethink his plans with Johnson – he’s a grafter and i think we’re going to need that. Get him signed up.

  • Colin

    I have to disagree completely. I think Walcott was alright.

    Re challenge from Bruce – it that was a ‘big club’ against a smaller club, let’s say Man U vs West Brom, it probably would have been given, but it wasn’t because the ref gave the benefit of the doubt to the other big club.

    As for the Parker challenge, 90% of strikers would have dived. He didn’t. He went on and made the shot. That WAS a penalty and Parker was stupid. The ref gave it, and rightly so.

    I don’t think he really dived and 90% of players would have made more of it. For example, Becchio runs into defenders with his arse out, trying to claim all sorts of decisions when he knows he’s clearly wrong.

    I think Theo is actually a decent bloke who follows the English trend of trying to stay on his feet after the Parker pull. I’m actually in support of Theo actually trying to play on after what would have been an easy dive. Most would have dived, he didn’t. We know for a fact that under the same Parker challenge, Becchio would have dived.

  • trueyorxman

    @Colin…who are you completely disagreeing with exactly?

    • Colin

      @trueyorxman i’m disagreeing with the post put forward that somehow Walcott is a dirty player. I don’t think he is and the theme seemed to be to have a pop at Walcott.

  • Colin

    i think that on a normal day, the Bruce challenge was a stone wall penalty. He didn’t get the ball, but he did get the player. I think Walcott is being kind.

  • Tim Hodge

    @colin

    I’m not suggesting Walcott is a dirty player. In my book diving = cheating and to admit it is just daft.

    I don’t think Walcott’s admission is out of arrogance, more likely naivety.

    I must say I’m by no means Walcott’s biggest fan, I think he’s one of the most vastly overrated players in England but there’s no chance he’s a dirty player. However, that doesn’t excuse his comments about having “a laugh and a joke”. It’s probably just him being naive but it’s not something I like to hear.

    I have no disagreement that both of Arsenal’s penalty shouts were stonewallers including the one which Walcott dived for. Which furthers the question – why the hell did he admit to diving?

    • Colin

      because he was put under pressure by the media and because he’s a nice guy. I’d like to hear the full interview, i bet it was tongue in cheek, but as you rightly say, daft. But i honestly don’t think he’s the cheating type as shown by the Parker challenge – he stayed on his feet.

  • trueyorxman

    @Colin. Ok, understand & totally agree with you. He neither needed to dive or ‘admit it’ afterwards did he? No doubt he’ll get some grief at Elland Road in the replay from ‘fans’ who last watched us play v Spurs & Liverpool last season!

  • TheReaper08

    Is the surprise that he admitted it or that he dived ? Players dive all the time, even our very own will have tripped on the imaginary foot.

    Is it better that he admits it and apologises, pretends he was fouled or simply says nothing ?

  • trueyorxman

    Whatever it don’t change nowt does it? 1 a piece…we’d have all settled for that before KO. They are still faves & I for one hope they turn it on for ‘our’ part-timers filling the ground for the replay. See you v Scunny next week u twats…or maybe not eh!

  • craig

    Fantastic game, amazing to think Bruce and Johnson have had so much stick recently, it would be great to see them both maintain this level of performance in the league.

    A fair result in retrospect but I really thought we might just nick it!

    Hope Arsenal win the league, they are an honest sporting team, this was what the FA Cup is all about, come on Leeds for the replay, well done lads, nobody played poorly today.

  • W

    As woeful as @rsenal were…and they were terrible by their high standards…the players did well, played without nerves and defended very well as a unit.

    The performance vs Man U was better mind you, but full credit to how Grayson got the boys to play today.

    The main weakness today was Parker – to get skinned by Bendtner like he did was poor and the penalty he gave away was cheap as walcott would likely have missed his shot.

    That said, plaudits to Johnson, Bruce, O’Brien and Becchio, but most of all Schmeichel kept us in the game and the replay is earned thanks to him.

    Still cannot believe how bad @rsenal were though. Surely they will not play as bad as that at ER?

  • Craig

    I was out all day, my hard disk recorder has decided not to refresh itself with TV schedules since the end of the year and the day was only made more tolerable by the belief that the match would be available on ITV player. I’ve just discovered that its not there and I’m livid!

  • Jon

    Am i the only one thinking, ‘if the first one was a dive… did he really lose his balance in the 2nd one’ ?

  • Teeth

    It seems we all feel the same on this one really- another small note is the appearance of somma- albeit brief, after the ‘disappearing’ article on here a few days ago. I would love to think we could attack a little more at E.R but ‘home advantage’ is not counting for much this season yet
    Sticking my neck out here but I think most Leeds fans have a slightly soft spot for the gunners bearing in mind the rivals in the premier elite over the last few years and the kind of football they play.

  • Irving08

    The side had a great shape today – congratulations simon for reverting to 4-2-3-1. Ben Parker was obviously a weak link – carrying too much surpus weight for tone thing. Personally I’d like another look at Aidy White in that position, but SG’s willingness to give players a chance is overall to be commended. My man Bradley once more showed why we need him; whilst Somma again did not impress as the front man of one (though it may be unfair to judge him on the basis of today). Arsenal appear to me to have gone backwards and unless Walcott and Fabregas start, I don’t see them doing what Tottenham did to us last year.

  • TheReaper08

    @Irving08 Are you kidding ? Somma got 5 minutes of normal time and 5 of extra time in a side that had been set up at that stage only to defend.

    Not fair to judge him on that basis? you ain’t kidding.

  • Andy Flynn

    The only stupid thing Theo did was giving an interview. I actually thought it was a penalty so not sure why he came out and said that! He’ll be on media training this week!

    Aidy White is a left winger. I don’t think he is good enough defensively for left-back. Parker is out of shape, but that’s to be expected after so long out. Bet he is feeling it today after 2 full games in 4 days!

    Would be good to get McCartney back in until end of season at least to give Parker some good competition!

    The less said about Bessone the better! A right-footed midfielder gets picked ahead of him, which would tell me he is already surplus to requirements!

    Great display by Leeds – though we struggled in last third of pitch in first half as we had plenty of opportunities to get forward, but defensively we were superb today! Let’s take that into the league games please!

  • CorbyWhite

    To be fair to Bradley Johnson he does put a lot of running in, but am i the only person that gets irate about the fact he doesn’t know what to do with the ball in the centre of midfield? Several times he dallied on the ball twisting and turning in the same metre radius and lost it every time. If Grayson sorted out his decisions and worked on his passing then we have a player there, but we can’t have a centre midfielder who can’t pick a pass as its never going to work.

  • trueyorxman

    Check out Henry Winters write up on our great club in todays Sunday Telegraph (might appear online somewhere later). It makes you proud

    • Colin
    • Colin

      @trueyorxman – good spot. it makes me feel proud also. We’ve had some weak games over Christmas, but am i the only one that feels there’s something growing here?? Leeds are all about attacking football. That’s the only way I think Grayson knows how to play. We may not have a team of 11 ‘great’ players, but we have a ‘great’ team – hard work, passion, make up for a lot of flaws in individual skill.

      As a fan, I’ve got a feeling about this team, a confindence in this team that I haven’t had for a few years. There’s something coming for Leeds…

      It’s full speed ahead for Locomotive train Leeds United heading towards its destination. And as shown by some of the Arsenal fans yesterday, there will be a lot of our old friends and foes who perhaps reluctantly, would have a smile on their faces when the train from Leeds, packed to the rafters with Yorkshiremen and Yorkshirewomen pull in at Premier League Central.

  • Dje

    Great performance by all the lads and Grayson; they really did the club proud, the fans too – and reminded me of why the modern day Premiership feels (well, sounds) flat without us.

    My only ‘what if’ is if Grayson could have brought on Hughes before their penalty rather than immediately afterwards, as Parker was clearly exposed and left to flounder for over twenty minutes after Walcott came on. Alternatively swapping Snodgrass over to the left side of midfield might have helped the lad out.

    All said and done though, we’ve earned the right to the replay and the heart says we’ve a fair second chance at it, even if the brain says: “league, league league”.

  • Howard Bartle

    If our defence defends like that from now until the end of the season, we are absolute certainties for promotion. Brilliant absolutely brilliant!!

  • dess

    If we defended like that every week we would be 10 points clear by now.
    Well done the Leeds fans who went. I was in the Arsenal end behind the goal and you looked magnificent.
    Best fans in the world