'I'm clearly not diving' - Crystal Palace's Zaha responds to accusation

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The Cote d'Ivoire international has defended his actions after being booked for simulation against the Hornets on Saturday

Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha has dismissed diving accusation levelled against him after Saturday's English Premier League encounter against Watford.

Roy Hodgson's men and the Hornets shared the spoils at Vicarage Road and the Cote d'Ivoire international was at the centre of attention as he was accused of diving on different occasions.

Late in the first half, Zaha went down in the penalty area after a challenge from Christian Kabasele but he declared that he had no intention for a penalty call.

“I didn’t try to claim for a penalty, but he [Christian Kabasele] has definitely pulled me and dragged me as I’m running,” Zaha told Sky Sports' Goals on Sunday programme.

"That’s made me stumble and I just happened to fall in the box. I was being called a diver then but I didn’t even try to claim a penalty for that."

After the restart, the 25-year-old was upended by Adrian Mariappa in the area but referee Chris Kavanagh opted to show him a yellow card for simulation; a decision that caught the attacker by surprise

However, Zaha disclosed that after the encounter, the defender admitted he fouled him.

"It was definitely a penalty. I was so shocked when the ref told me it was a dive,” he continued.

“What was funny was after the game - even though it makes no difference - was that he [Mariappa] has actually said ‘I’ll be honest, Wilf, it was actually a pen’.

“I was happy that he admitted that, even if I got a yellow card when I shouldn’t have."

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Wilf PS

When quizzed whether there is an agenda against him as a diver, the former Manchester United player said: “I feel that there totally is. I see other players dive, but I don’t see people trying to get them banned the way they want to get me banned. I haven’t been banned so I’m clearly not diving.

"I just play my football, really. People will say what they want to say and that's fine. I'll still play the same way I play."

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