Arsenal accused of diving in long rant by Burnley boss Sean Dyche
LONDON -- Burnley manager Sean Dyche accused Arsenal players of diving during the Gunners' 3-1 win on Saturday in a long rant about decisions that went against his side -- drawing a rebuke from Unai Emery who said coaches must show more respect toward the referee
Dyche was fuming after the Premier League defeat at the Emirates, and also complained that Burnley have not been awarded a penalty in 61 league games but should have been given one when Kevin Long was pushed in the box.
He also claimed Ashley Barnes should not have been booked for putting Sokratis Papastathopoulos in a headlock in the first half, because he had been elbowed moments earlier.
"Two dives," Dyche said. "No one wants to do anything about the diving in the game apart from me. I'm still amazed by it. They don't get booked. We know nothing will happen retrospectively. One of their players would have definitely gone off the pitch.
"Even at the end [Matej] Vydra goes through, I think with [Granit] Xhaka, touches him on his shoulder marginally and he goes down and gets a free kick. Centre halves now going down. No one wants to do anything about it so I'll leave it there.
"No one wants to affect the diving. I think they had three here the other week and it just goes away and everyone goes 'oh well.' Kids everywhere are watching it, all copying. ... I'd like to see people banned. It'd evaporate out of the game.
"There's millions of children -- I've said many times you wouldn't ruffle your kids hair if they cheated in a maths test. They cheated in a game of football and it's OK. ... There were two blatant ones today, nothing done by the ref."
Dyche and his coaching staff even became embroiled in a shouting match with Arsenal players Alexandre Lacazette and Xhaka during the second half, and Emery had some choice words for the manager during the handshake after the game, when he held on to Dyche's arm to deliver a rebuke as the Burnley boss tried to walk away.
"[Emery] said 'you were questioning the referee.' I said 'yes, you're right I was. All the best for Christmas,'" Dyche said about the exchange.
Emery didn't want to disclose what was said but urged all players and managers to have more respect for the referees.
"The things that happened on the pitch between the players, between us, is our moment," he said. "This moment, with the referee, between us, I think we need to have respect for the referee, and to have respect between us."
Barnes, who scored Burnley's goal, was also involved in an incident where he seemed to step on Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi, but escaped unpunished. Dyche said he hadn't seen that incident, but had plenty of criticism for referee Kevin Friend's other decisions.
"Shall we start on the 61 games without a penalty and the clear double-handed push in the back from Kevin Long? That's a pretty good start I think," he said. "Ashley Barnes getting booked when their player clearly threw an elbow out at him, which I've seen back by the way, an unnatural arm movement towards the face. Somehow Ashley Barnes came out of that and got booked."
Emery, meanwhile, praised Mesut Ozil for delivering a strong performance after returning to the starting line-up, having been dropped completely for Wednesday's Carabao Cup loss to Tottenham.
Ozil was directly involved in the first and third goals, offering a reminder that he remains the most potent creative midfielder in the squad.
"A very good response. I think he played like we need today," Emery said. "His skills, his commitment with us today is very good. And he helped us. ... We need Mesut Ozil and today he was great for us."
Emery also shrugged off Alexandre Lacazette's angry reaction to being subbed off, as he seemed to have a heated exchange with Mohamed Elneny on the bench -- possibly continuing an argument that began on the pitch in the first half.
"I didn't see that. I think he is happy with our victory. He wants to score, and when a striker doesn't score, it's good [if he] can be angry with the situation. But he worked very well today. Today is for me, the last matches, is the best he has played."