Diving me crazy
Did you see that swarm of angry bees at the Emirates on Wednesday night?
Any road, Scott Brown, Snr Donati and all were desperate to get their stingers into one Eduardo da Simulata's face after he plunged to the turf in the box. It was such a sentimental piece of play-acting I could almost smell the whiff of the caps in me cowboy gun going off as he hit the deck.
There are many of us who suspect that football is becoming a non-contact sport and looking at the Boruc-Eduardo incident I've not changed me mind. For the record the regulars at The Blue Bell love it when Celtic play 'cos you can always strike up the same conversation with an irregular in the pub:
Celtic's Scott Brown was unhappy with Eduardo's antics
"Excuse me mate. What's the name of the Celtic keeper?"
"All right, mate I only asked!"
I tell you it's a laugh a flaming minute down our gaff.
Wenger adjusted his official line of 'I didn't see it' to 'he was probably trying to get out of the way what with his horribly shattered leg only just being fixed 'n' that'.
It's a persuasive argument. I'd use it meself if he was my kid playing in my team. I don't want to even think about the state of that lad's leg ever again.
But the fact is that Eduardo's headlong theatrical plummet was symptomatic of a great malaise in our game. Namely that a forward passing a prone keeper is pretty much programmed to go down these days - even one who can appreciate how lucky he is to still be playing the beautiful game.
An onrushing goalie makes 'em stumble just as surely as Pavlov's dogs used to salivate. The fall is as inevitable as the sulk of a defeated Benitez or the jeers of a temporarily let-down Aston Villa fan.
So what to do about this flagrant and cowardly conmanship?The Scots are up for banning folks for a couple of matches - and Eduardo has now been charged by Uefa - but the point with the Gooners is that the damage has been done. The lad stepped up and slotted the pen and it was Game Over.
Anyway, what you want to do is change the players' behaviour and to me there is only one route: humiliation. Here's how I'd go about it:
1.If someone is pretty much proved to be a diver then they should be treated as one. Don't ban them. Make them play the next game in mask and flippers. Forty-five minutes of Eduardo togged up like Jacques Bloomin Cousteau charging up and down the left flank should make him change his ways.
2. If you do want to enforce a ban then don't let the sneaky little oik have the afternoon off. Clad him out in the wetsuit and the oxygen tanks and make him watch the game through the walls of a water-filled glass cube on the touchline.
Maybe Noel Edmonds could do that hilarious filling the tank with gunk thing that he used to do on House Party. Lord, I miss Edmonds. Covering someone with tons of funny-coloured paint is just about as hilarious as life can get!
3. Send the offender to primary schools across the local area and get them to look into the Disney innocent eyes of the child-fans and get him to explain what the hell he was trying to do as he flopped on to the floor like some two-bit model onto a mattress in a cut-price bed commercial. See how they respond when some naive waif with teary eyes bleats "Say it ain't so, Eduardo".
4. Pursuing the diving theme, give them a good five-game ban and get them to spend that time joining in with one of them macho muppets that makes nature TV programmes about Wild And Dangerous Creatures.
In short, get them swimming with sharks in just their underpants. None of this iron cage on a cable rubbish either. Just the cheating little tumbler and a pack of toothy cartilaginous killing machines and a numpty with an in-mask mike shouting "Isn't this Brilliant, Stevie G!?" To be fair Mr Gerrard has on at least one occasion been marked by one J Barton so it's hardly going to terrify the lad to be submerged in the company of a Great White.
5. A Tom Daley masterclass - from the highest board you can find (brown trunks obligatory I would guess).
6. Failing this we must acknowledge and embrace the concept of simulation within the game and allow each team to nominate their designated diver. (A regular poster invented this term - please take the credit yourself son or I'll start telling everyone that I was the genius that came up with it).
One of our divers is missing - Ronaldo has moved on
The designated diver would be the only player allowed to collapse like a half-price self-assembly bookcase. Everyone else would be ignored if they got clogged in the box but the designated diver, subject to the scores proffered by a panel of nine faceless judges, could earn penalties for his side by legitimately cheating. Could be a winner.
I haven't passed comment on goings-on at Upton Park this week. There's not been a lot of hooliganism at the Riverside for the last 10 years or more. I was caught square in the face by a rogue parmo two years back - the hot cheese left a nasty blister and the garlic sauce doesn't half sting your eyes. That's the least the Irons and Miwwaww 'fans' involved deserve.
I'd use the CCTV pics to ID them and then the whole bunch of 30-something, beer-gutted brain-dead no-mates with no moral compass can become the guinea-pigs for a prototype floating prison.
Push 'em off at Falmouth - no prison officers need be involved bar locking them in - and let em drift towards God knows where while the rest of us watch the football.
(Although we could let some of em - if they behave well - jump into the ocean with errant Arsenal forwards and those lovely sharks)