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Dutch relief as Robben escapes ban after diving


Arjen Robben

Arjen Robben


Arjen Robben

Arjen Robben has escaped punishment from Fifa after he admitted diving during Holland's late win over Mexico – a "stupid action" the winger hopes everyone can move on from.

The Oranje produced a remarkable late comeback on Sunday to deny Mexico a first quarter-final in 28 years, with Wesley Sneijder levelling before substitute Klaas-Jan Huntelaar struck from the spot in stoppage time to secure a 2-1 win.

Robben was taken down by Rafael Marquez for the deciding spot-kick and insisted after the match it was "definitely a foul", although made headlines by admitting he did dive earlier in the match.

The Bayern Munich winger apologised immediately after the game for taking a tumble and did so again at a press conference in Rio de Janeiro yesterday, just hours after Fifa confirmed no action would be taken against him.

Fifa head of media Delia Fischer said the disciplinary committee would only look retrospectively at "serious infringements" of fair play rules and that Robben would face no action – a decision the winger had expected all along.

Asked if he thought he would be sanctioned, Robben said: "No, not at all, why? No. I was not afraid. I am an honest guy. It had no influence on the game.

"It's a shame because yesterday in an interview after the game I was very honest. Maybe sometimes you are punished for honesty, but I always prefer to be honest.

"I said there was one foul in the first half where I went to the ground because I thought he would tackle me, but he took his leg away and I went to the ground without a touch.

"It was a stupid action from me, but it had no influence on the game, and had nothing to do with the penalty kick."

Belfast Telegraph