Last night’s FA Cup replay between Chelsea and Norwich saw Crystal Palace’s fan-base enraged at the hypocrisy of the media following the referee’s decision to book Alvaro Morata for diving.
Having already booked Pedro for a blatant act of simulation, the referee chose to penalise Morata for going down too easily after contact on his shoulder just inside the penalty area, provoking the Real Madrid man to lose his cool and receive a second yellow card for dissent.
You won’t be surprised to learn that Morata’s situation prompted Palace fans the world over to look towards the likes of Chris Sutton for their reaction after the dreadful treatment of Wilfried Zaha in the aftermath of the penalty he was awarded against Manchester City on New Year’s Day.
What a bonkers game!!! Goes to penalties!!!Chelsea down to 9 ! Morata red Pedro red… VAR not used when clear and obvious penalty not given…
— Chris Sutton (@chris_sutton73) January 17, 2018
Predictably, the former Chelsea striker saw nothing wrong with the way Alvaro hit the turf calling a “clear and obvious penalty”, which quite rightly drew criticism from dozens of Palace fans, including our own chairman Steve Parish.
Only the player knows that one I think.
I know this If it was Wilf all those pundits and ex players would, without a doubt be saying it’s a dive.
Top Six players. Any contact in the box and it’s reasonable to go down
Wilf it has to be close to GBH https://t.co/nGeTThFGm1
— Steve Parish (@CEO4TAG) January 17, 2018
Those on the outside of the Palace bubble looking in may feel as though we bang on about Wilf far too often but in truth, it’s a reaction to the undeniably rough treatment he gets in the press in comparison to his contemporaries.
Will there be a double page spread entitled “The Pedro Diving Debate” in the Daily Mail today or tomorrow? You can bet not. Will Mark Clattenburg publicly come out and say Morata is a player you cannot trust when writing in The Times? No. Will Graham Poll suggest a longer ban to “teach him a lesson”? Of course not. These comments seem reserved solely for the 25-year-old Palace academy graduate. The reason for that is one I’ll leave you to ponder on but I know exactly where I think the motivation to vilify him stems from.
When all is said and done, all I and every other Palace fan wants is for Wilf to be treated with the same respect as every other player in the Premier League. If, as I suspect, that’s too much to ask for, you can expect me to continue pointing out the hypocrisy of supposed “experts” views until the day I drop.