Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid Stars Named 'Wimps' by Juan Mercier – Bleacher Report

San Lorenzo captain Juan Mercier has labelled Real Madrid’s players “wimps” and accused them of diving during the FIFA Club World Cup final.
Los Blancos prevailed 2-0 to capture the intercontinental trophy, with goals from Sergio Ramos and Gareth Bale settling a gritty tie. Mercier believes the European Champions aren’t used to facing the physicality of Argentinian football and suggests they would struggle to make such an impression in South America, reported by Marca:
Every time you touched one of the wimps, they went tumbling over. You went in hard to close them down—foul. You threw yourself into a challenge—foul. They should come and play over here for a while. We played the way we know how: they’re not used to physical contact.

San Lorenzo conceded 17 fouls to Madrid’s 12 throughout the match, per Soccerway. The underdogs certainly showed no fear of taking on Europe’s best and looked to break up play with solid tackles. Mercier reveals they consciously tried to “keep the ball” in order to stop Madrid’s creative individuals influencing the match, taking a more confident approach than many La Liga sides.
Cristiano Ronaldo was widely berated for a blatant dive against Celta Vigo at the beginning of the month. He converted the resulting penalty, with opposition defender Jonny later calling for punishment to be taken on those who fling themselves to the ground, reported by Dermot Corrigan of ESPN FC:
I really do think that these type of actions must be punished. In the end it dirties football a bit. If we were all honourable in these type of plays, there would be less whistles for referees and they would have things much easier. We must help the referees.
Madrid’s players are perhaps used to receiving fouls from referees, both in Spain and during European competition. Considering the speed individuals such as Ronaldo and Gareth Bale play at—the kind of breakneck pace that will see them knocked off balance easily—it’s no surprise fouls totted up during the recent clash with San Lorenzo.
Crafty individuals are able to use dives to their advantage. This was highlighted by CR7’s penalty against Celta and is something witnessed across all leagues on a weekly basis.
Diving has become an unfortunate branch of gamesmanship which rewards those who can exaggerate contact. Quite often dives follow tackles which would be deemed fouls, but overstating the truth is supposedly meant to make up the minds of referees. This often works, of course, as it’s immensely difficult to spot play-acting in real time and without video replays.

San Lorenzo battled well against Madrid, but it would be interesting to see if Mercier took the same stance with his own players.
If one of the skipper’s team-mates won a vital penalty in the match, for instance, would he have reacted in the same way? Players are quick to judge other sides and rarely show the same kind of frustration if their own colleagues are culpable.
It’s likely Mercier would have rather accepted victory fuelled by diving than an honorable defeat. Many players would, underlining an attitude problem which has allowed tumbling to become a legitimate part of any match.
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