Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney ‘apologises’ over Preston dive

by Ben Topliss

Preston North End keeper Thorsten Stuckmann has said Wayne Rooney apologised for the way he won Manchester United’s penalty during the FA Cup fifth round meeting between the two side’s on Monday night.

Rooney went down in the Preston box towards the end of the game after Stuckmann had come sliding out of his goal to meet him.

It appeared there was minimal contact between the two players but Rooney jumped to avoid the challenge before he stepped up to score the penalty and seal a 3-1 victory.

The United captain was accused of diving following the game and Stuckmann said Rooney’s apology was proof of that:

Speaking about the incident, Stuckmann said: “After the game Rooney told me: ‘Sorry, it was my chance to get a penalty. I had to use that’.

“I say it clear: that was no penalty. I also believe that if the situation had happened the other way around, one of our strikers against the United keeper, the ref wouldn’t have given the penalty. I have no doubt about that.”

Rooney certainly made the most of the situation but Stuckmann was always running the risk of conceding a spot kick by rushing out of his goal. In some ways, it was both a penalty and a dive.

The rules state that a penalty can be given if an opponent attempts to trip a player in the box so technically Rooney did deserve a penalty. He went down in order to make it clear to the referee that Stuckmann was being reckless and the Preston keeper can have no complaints.

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