SMITH SLAMS DIVERS
By Peter O`Rourke
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Smith, who accused Leicester City's Robbie Savage of diving to win a penalty in Saturday's game between the two clubs, admitted he may have got it wrong but that the Welsh international made the most of the incident.
The veteran manager revealed he was unhappy with Savage's reaction at winning the penalty which gave Leicester City a 3-2 win at Pride Park which caused a major bust-up among opposing players which continued in the tunnel at the final whistle.
Smith did not initially feel defender Danny Higginbotham made contact with Savage and although he has since changed his opinion, he feels it is happening too often where players make a meal of challenges in the area in the hope of winning a penalty.
"I have looked at the video with regards to the penalty decision - and to be fair I think Danny Higginbotham just caught Savage," said Smith.
"But the ball was running away from him and he made the most of the opportunity.
"That was disappointing in itself - but it's something we're used to with Savage. However, his actions afterwards were very, very disappointing."
Smith believes it is up to the managers, referees to try and stamp out the problem.
"I don't think anyone owns up and says they dive - but there is no place for it," said Smith.
"It's something that's crept into the game more and more and I think it is sad - particularly when you become infamous for your deeds off the ball rather than with it.
"We've got professional referees now. Surely they must sit and talk and study their performances and study players - and be aware of certain players who continually do this type of thing.
"They can sort it out. They can bring the red card out in some cases or take the necessary action, ungentlemanly conduct or whatever you want to call it - it's there for them to do."