Neymar not the only diver at World Cup – Manchester United’s Jose Mourinho

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Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has said World Cup stars should cut out the play-acting but that it is unfair to single out Neymar.

Brazil forward Neymar has been heavily criticised for diving during the tournament, but Mourinho said he was not the only one and accused England defender Harry Maguire of doing the same during the victory over Colombia.

“People are focusing on Neymar, but if it was only Neymar I’d be happy — but it’s not only Neymar,” he told RT.

“Every team has lots of diving, lots of pretending, lots of putting pressure on the referee. The game loses quality, and for me that was the negative point.

“It’s not about England and Colombia, it’s almost every match, they are creating such a difficult job for the referees in every match. Even with VAR the players are creating problems.

“I was surprised to see central defenders like Harry Maguire, normally he is a very honest guy, diving in the attacking box asking the referee for VAR.

“The players should feel the responsibility of playing in the World Cup in front of billions of spectators.”

Meanwhile, Mourinho said he believed England have a “golden chance” to reach the World Cup final for the first time in more than 50 years.

Gareth Southgate’s team face a quarterfinal against Sweden on Saturday before a possible semifinal meeting with either Croatia or Russia.

And with Germany and Spain absent from their side of the draw, Mourinho believes England could get to their first final since 1966.

“For many years England is not reaching this stage of the competition, so being in the quarterfinals, playing against Sweden, having for the semifinal the winner of Russia versus Croatia, I would say England has a golden chance to be in the World Cup final,” he said.

England’s first penalty shootout victory in the World Cup saw them through against Colombia, but Mourinho was quick to point out that there is room for improvement against Sweden.

“By the English point of view it depends on the way you look at it,” he added. “If the most important point of view is the result, if the most important thing is to win, if the most important thing is to be in the quarterfinals, then great, job done, people are happy.

“If you focus on the quality of the game, if you focus on the dominancy, then you are not so happy.”

Rob is ESPN FC’s Manchester United correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @RobDawsonESPN.