Palace boss Pardew accuses Benteke of diving

Date published: Sunday 6th March 2016 7:47

Alan Pardew: Unhappy with late penalty decision

Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew has accused Liverpool striker Christian Benteke of diving after the striker won a last minute penalty to clinch a 2-1 win at Selhurst Park.

In an astonishing post-match interview, Palace manager Pardew accused the Belgian international of going down too easily under Damien Delaney’s challenge.

Palace looked to be heading for their first win of 2016 after midfielder Joe Ledley gave them a 1-0 lead, and then Reds midfielder James Milner was sent off after picking up two yellow cards.

But 10-man Liverpool fought back and forward Roberto Firmino capitalised on an error from goalkeeper Alex McCarthy to level the game.

The controversy came in the final minute of the match when substitute Benteke went down in the box under Delaney’s challenge, and the striker duly converted to claim a 2-1 win for Liverpool.

Palace boss Pardew was angry with the decision to award the last minute penalty, and accused Benteke of “making the most” of the tackle.

Speaking after the match, Pardew said: “That touch doesn’t warrant the dive he makes, and it’s the dive that makes the linesman’s mind up. It’s a worrying issue in the game.

“I’ve heard (Sky Sports pundit and former Liverpool defender) Jamie Carragher saying there was contact and he was within his rights to go down. Jamie Carragher is saying that? He’s an ex pro. Come on.

“Both of them (Benteke and the referee): really frustrated with that. You try to be fair, to say the right thing to your players, and send out the right message to the players.

“Everyone’s seen the penalty. If you’re the referee and see the centre-half pulling out of the challenge, you don’t give the penalty. And I don’t think he did.

“The linesman assumes that little touch is a penalty. He makes the most of it. If you think that touch affects the fall and the way he lands, then you really need to be consulted.

“That touch doesn’t warrant that dive. If that touch warrants a collapse like that, then wow, we really need to say: ‘Come on’.”

Palace, who remain 15th in the table, are the only team yet to win in the Premier League in 2016 and now see their winless run stretch to 12 games.

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