Darren Bent has criticised Newcastle’s Jetro Willems for appearing to dive in the build-up to Yoshinori Muto’s goal against Leicester.
The two teams met in a second-round Carabao Cup clash at St James’ Park on Wednesday night, which ended in the Foxes favour after a tense penalty shootout.
James Maddison gave Leicester the lead in the 34th minute before Muto levelled the scores in the second half and spot-kicks were eventually needed after neither side could grab a winner.
Brendan Rodgers’ side sealed their spot in the third round with a 4-2 win in the shootout, but Willems’ actions for the Magpies equaliser have still been called into question.
Ex-Premier League striker Bent, who covered the game as a pundit for Quest, slammed the Dutch defender for his theatrics which ultimately led to Muto’s goal.
After bringing down a pass from Emil Krafth with his chest, Willems threw himself to the ground as Leicester’s Ricardo Pereira challenged for the ball, with replays showing that no real contact was made.
Jetro Willems did not die for this shit. pic.twitter.com/e2qwbivgYi
— Tino’sBestMate (@JonnyMartin1) August 28, 2019
The ball broke kindly for Muto, who tapped into the net for his first goal of the season, but Bent insisted that it “shouldn’t have counted” because of Willems’ dive.
The former Tottenham forward said live on Quest: “Because he has dived, the referee has got to stop the play there and book him, because it is dissent at the end of the day,
“It’s a dive and the goal should not have counted. It’s the most flamboyant dive I’ve ever seen.
“It’s shocking. We’re trying to get it out of the game. For me, it shouldn’t have counted.”
— Quest (@QuestTV) August 28, 2019
Newcastle ultimately fell to their third defeat of the 2019-20 campaign, but Willems escaped punishment for a blatant attempt to deceive the referee, which warranted at the very least a yellow card.
Steve Bruce’s side will now have to pick themselves up quickly ahead of a home clash against Watford in the Premier League this Sunday, while Leicester prepare to host Bournemouth on the same day.