Pique - Drogba no cheat
Barcelona defender defends striker over diving accusations
Last Updated: April 24, 2012 7:56am
Didier Drogba: Accused by some of diving, but Gerard Pique believes in his honesty
Barcelona defender Gerard Pique does not believe Didier Drogba was trying to act or dive in the UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg.
Goalscorer Drogba managed to waste a crucial six-and-a-half minutes in Chelsea's 1-0 win over Barcelona last Wednesday after collapsing to the ground in apparent agony several times at Stamford Bridge.
The visitors initially reacted by sportingly kicking the ball out of play but eventually became infuriated by Drogba's antics, with captain Carles Puyol letting rip at the 34-year-old.
But Pique, who looked on from the bench on Wednesday and could now be charged with marking Drogba in Tuesday's second leg, believes in the striker's honesty.
"I believe in Drogba that, every time he fell down, it was because he was in pain, or he felt a kick on him."
Gerard Pique Quotes of the week
Informed that former Manchester United team-mate Wayne Rooney had hit out at Drogba on Twitter, Pique told a press conference on Monday: "He's always on Twitter, isn't he?
"I believe in Drogba that, every time he fell down, it was because he was in pain, or he felt a kick on him.
"I don't think that, when Drogba fell down, he was trying to act or dive.
"If not, we'll start to talk about football not having fair play and being all about cheats. Football is not like that.
"We have to keep all the good things, and diving and cheating is not good."
He added: "If he keeps doing that, you might end up thinking that's the case (that he is not hurt). But I believe in his honesty."