Weligton should know better than to pull a stunt like this. After all, he has played professional soccer in front of cameras and crowds for over a decade.
The veteran defender, who plays for Spanish club Malaga CF, joined the ranks of soccer’s worst cheaters Saturday when he dove twice on the same play. His antics fooled nobody, and his team lost the game La Liga (Spanish first division) game to Atletico Madrid in what can only be described as “poetic justice.”
Late in the game, Weligton, 34, made a little contact with Atletico’s Cristian Rodriguez in the corner and went straight to the ground. The assistant referee awarded Malaga a free kick, but the Brazilian wasn’t done with the acting.
He got up, pushed the ball into Rodriguez’s stomach and momentarily faced down his opponent before hitting the deck again — as if Rodriguez yanked him down. The referee awarded Weligton no points (for diving or acting) and the game mercifully ended a few minutes later without incident.
This is a classic example of how a simple play-acting job can make a soccer player infamous in the digital age in which we live.
See Weligton’s double dive in the video below.