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Everton's Ross Barkley: I’m a scouser, not a diver!

Barkley keen to put an end to growing ‘diver’ reputation

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

After being crucified by pundit after pundit for diving against West Ham United, Ross Barkley was cautioned for the same offence on Saturday at Manchester City.

A couple of games ago at Goodison Park, Barkley was expecting a challenge from Kevin Nolan but the West Ham skipper pulled out and didn’t make a tackle.

Subsequently, that weekend the 21-year-old was slated in the media and post-match analysis in England for his dive.

The playmaker told the Liverpool Echo; "All the talk about what happened against West Ham, which I didn't even intend on doing, is having an effect.

I was expecting contact. You could see that from my reaction in that game – I got straight back up and tried to get on the ball but the ref gave the free kick."

In the Man. City game, Frank Lampard did foul him – not a foul that was going to cause him injury but a foul nonetheless and the yellow card is the ‘effect’ Barkley is referring.

Barkley developed a reputation as being a diver and that is the only reason for his booking on Saturday and this reputation is something he is looking to put behind him.

"I was 100 per cent certain it should have been a free-kick. The ref made his decision and said I dived but I don't think that's right.

I don't ever intend to dive. I'm a Scouser – we don't do things like that. It's frustrating."