Brazilians 'provoked' by Robben's dives
By MIKE ZEISBERGER, QMI Agency
PORT ELIZABETH – Dutch star Arjen Robben probably did more flopping on the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium pitch than the frolicking dolphins did off nearby Port Elizabeth Beach Friday afternoon.
Robben’s consistent dives had the Brazilians frustrated all afternoon. One of them led to a free kick that resulted in the tying goal of the huge 2-1 victory by the Netherlands in the World Cup quarterfinal showdown at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
Frustrated by Robben’s theatrics, defender Felipe Melo finally snapped and stamped on him in the 73rd minute, an act that got the Brazilian sent off.
Afterwards, Dutch manager Bert Van Marwijk became upset in his post-game press conference when it was suggested Robben had been acting.
“I think it was the other way around,” he said. “The opponent, I think, tried to provoke us more than we tried to provoke them. You could see that from the very beginning.
“I think we showed discipline. We remained calm, cool and collected.”
The Dutch manager suggested reporters watch replays in order to see that it was the Brazilian players, not Robben, who were guilty of diving.
“I think you’d be ashamed for Brazilian football,” he said.