MLS official responds to accusations of “cheaters winning”


MLS executive vice president of competition Nelson Rodriguez clearly does not agree with Houston manager Dominic Kinnear, who says brazen incidences of diving and embellishment have become more frequent this year.

MLS did issue five fines in 2012 for embellishment. And there was a very high profile dive from Charlie Davies in 2011, for which the D.C. United man was fined.

This is all about Kinnear’s tirade Sunday, first reported at ProSoccerTalk, on diving and “cheating.” He believes it has been particularly bad over three rounds of 2013 MLS action.

(MORE: Does Kinnear have a point in all this?)

What Rodriquez told on Tuesday:

In general, the league does not wish to see simulation or embellishment. Is it worse in MLS than in other leagues? No, I don’t believe so. In fact, I think it’s generally better than in other leagues. But it is always a challenge to try to modify such behavior because unfortunately, it has become engrained in soccer worldwide as a form of acceptable gamesmanship.

“I think a vast majority of North American soccer fans and sports fans in general view the attempt to influence a referee decision through these means as unsightly or even unacceptable.”