Take back your boos, England fans
Arsenal striker Eduardo has had his two-match ban for an alleged dive in the Champions League qualifier against Celtic reversed. Uefa has performed a U-turn stating that they could not prove that the Croatian international had deliberately deceived the referee after the Gunners appealed.
Eduardo had faced very public condemnation from pundits and fellow pros, including John Terry and Sir Alex Ferguson, over the incident. But an Arsenal appeal that is believed to have centred around evidence that there was contact between goalkeeper Artur Boruc and Eduardo’s right leg, and footage of numerous dives that have been unpunished by Uefa was successful.
A Uefa statement said: “Following examination of all the evidence, notably the declarations of both the referee and the referees’ assessor, as well as the various video footage, it was not established to our satisfaction that the referee had been deceived in taking his decision on the penalty.”
Eduardo said he was relieved to have been cleared. He added: “I did not want to say anything until I was proved innocent. I am not a cheat. I don’t dive. And I was very upset when people thought I had.”
Uefa has already faced criticism for its handling of the case after allegedly initially scheduling the appeal for last Wednesday night when Eduardo was playing for Croatia against England.