Former Arsenal chairman Peter Hill-Wood has blasted Chelsea’s Diego Costa by calling him a cheat and insisting that he - rather than Per Mertesacker - should have been sent off during Sunday’s clash.
The striker was brought down by the German defender after 18 minutes and was shown the red card by referee Mark Clattenburg, who decided that Mertesacker had denied a goal scoring opportunity.
However, Hill-Wood clearly disagreed with the decision and launched a scathing attack on Costa.
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“He is a serial cheat and he gets away with it,” the 79-year-old said.
“I think he deliberately ran in front of Mertesacker, who hardly touched him. Yet Costa rolls around as if his legs have been cut off. Once the red card’s been shown, he’s suddenly perfectly all right again.
“That’s because there’s absolutely nothing wrong with him. There certainly wasn’t soon after when he scored that goal.
“Personally I think the referee should have sent him off for diving. It’s very annoying because to me it is blatant.”
It’s not the first time that Costa has been involved in the sending-off of an Arsenal centre-back this season. In the first fixture between the two sides at Stamford Bridge in September he hit Laurent Koscielny in the face before pushing him to the ground. This provoked a reaction from fellow central-defender Gabriel who eventually saw red after flicking his heel into the legs of the controversial Brazilian.
Costa has found form under caretaker manager Guus Hiddink and has now scored six goals in as many matches with the club on a seven-match unbeaten run.