BBC presenter Mark Chapman was left red-faced after being called out by Micah Richards while running the rule over this weekend’s FA Cup action. The duo were on punditry duties for Saturday’s game between Middlesbrough and Aston Villa and were analysing the biggest talking points during the half-time break.
Richards took the opportunity to embarrass Chapman while discussing a missed chance by Middlesbrough forward Josh Coburn, who failed to connect with an inviting cross into the box. The former Manchester City defender was adamant that Coburn should have attempted a diving header instead of letting the ball pass him by, but Chapman was not quite as convinced.
“Is it? I mean Dion [Dublin] said on commentary it was a diving header,” said Chapman, before Richards pointed out the BBC presenter’s lack of football experience. He responded: “Leave it to the professionals. We’ve all said it’s a diving header, isn’t it? You played Sunday league!”
Chapman quickly hit back, saying: “I did. You would not have done a diving header.” Richards then replied: “Of course I would. It was a diving header there.”
However, fellow pundit Stewart Downing opted to side with Chapman as he offered his take on the situation, saying: “I certainly wouldn’t have. I never headed anything anyway. I would’ve done exactly what Josh Coburn did.”
Chapman later reignited the debate by suggesting that many players at Sunday level would have opted for a diving header in the same scenario. He quipped: “I think you’ll find there are some Sunday league players who are good at diving headers,” before Richards shut him down again, saying: “Just not you!”
The BBC’s coverage of the FA Cup has been fronted by Chapman for a number of years, with this weekend’s round of fixtures throwing up a few eye-catching results. Sixth-tier Maidstone booked their place in the fourth round of the competition with a famous win over Stevenage, who are battling it out for a place in the League One play-offs.
Bristol Rovers managed to force a replay with Norwich City by holding the Canaries to a draw at Carrow Road, while Eastleigh will also be in the hat for the next round after their stalemate at Newport County. Newcastle, meanwhile, will be among the happiest clubs after securing a 3-0 win over bitter rivals Sunderland to mark their first Tyne-Wear derby triumph in over a decade.
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