It did not take the conspiracy theorists long after Real Madrid’s 2-0 win over Malaga on Saturday to start chatting.
Gareth Bale came on in the 76th minute for Real Madrid, a small triumph for the world’s most expensive player after working his way back to full fitness during the international break with stories swirling of long-term injuries.
In the final seconds, Bale charged down the right in typical style and took on Malaga defender Welligton.
Whether Bale dived or simply lost his footing will likely be the subject of conjecture for some time, at least until Real Madrid play their next game against Juventus in the Champions League on Wednesday.
Of course, Bale picked up a reputation for diving in England (rightly or wrongly) and Real Madrid have had a tradition of winning penalties at the Bernabeu from soft decisions.
Interestingly, the Madrid-based press have been unanimous about the decision. Both Marca and AS write that referee Miguel Ayza got it WRONG.
Poll below, followed by GIF and video.