The ex-Germany star feels the Dutchman proved his attacking experience when he went down under a challenge from Rafael Marquez to earn the winning penalty against Mexico
Former Germany international Oliver Kahn has defended Arjen Robben in the wake of his alleged dive in Netherlands’ 2-1 World Cup round-of-16 win over Mexico.
The Bayern Munich winger went to the ground after Rafael Marquez’s reckless challenge in his own area in the dying minutes of the match to win his side the penalty that eventually saw them progress to the quarter-finals.
Although there was contact between Marquez and Robben, the Dutchman has been criticised for making the most of the challenge and exaggerating his fall, but Kahn feels the winger did what every experienced attacker would have done.
“A world-class attacker like Robben takes advantage of a situation like that,” Kahn told ZDF.
“If you are offered a chance like that, you can only be grateful and take it.
“An experienced attacker will not pass up on an opportunity like this. They are always looking for situations like this.”
Robben admitted after the game that he did dive at one moment in the first half – though he insisted the decisive penalty decision was just – and Kahn has stressed the Dutchman would have been better to be less honest in the aftermath of the match.
“It’s not the smartest thing to do to say something like that after the game. It’s best to keep quiet.”
Netherlands meet Costa Rica in the quarter-finals on July 5.