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Everton ace Barkley: I'm a Scouser. I don't dive

Everton midfielder Ross Barkley has rubbished claims he's a serial diver.

The 21-year-old England international was booked for simulation on Saturday, despite going down after clear contact from Manchester City's Frank Lampard.

And Barkley believes that he has gained a negative reputation in the minds of referees after an incident against West Ham in November, which saw him go to ground and win a free-kick despite not being touched by Kevin Nolan.

"All the talk about what happened against West Ham, which I didn't even intend on doing, is having an effect," Barkley told the Liverpool Echo.

"I was expecting contact. You could see that from my reaction in that game - I got straight back up and tried to get on the ball but the ref gave the free kick."

During Everton's defeat by Manchester City on Saturday, Barkley was cautioned for diving, but the midfielder insists the referee's decision was wrong.

"I was 100 per cent certain it should have been a free-kick. The ref made his decision and said I dived but I don't think that's right.

"I don't ever intend to dive. I'm a Scouser - we don't do things like that. It's frustrating."

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