Sam Allardyce says Watford’s mascot was “out of order” for diving in front of Wilfried Zaha at full-time of the game with Crystal Palace at Vicarage Road.
Harry the Hornet, who is played enthusiastically by Gareth Evans, made a beeline for the Palace winger once the final whistle had blown and threw himself to the floor as Zaha was applauding the away fans.
An angry Zaha had to be dragged away and escorted down the tunnel by a member of the Palace backroom team. Zaha had been booked on 86 minutes for simulation after Mark Clattenburg felt he went down too easily under the challenge of Miguel Britos.
‘The mascot is out of order, isn’t he?” said Allardyce. “He [Zaha] was very angry at the end. If they’re diving they don’t get that angry do they? That’s up to Watford to sort that out, really. The Premier League and FA can look at that and do what they want to do. It could have got the wrong reaction, as we know.”
The usually intense Walter Mazzarri felt the incident was much ado about nothing, especially in pantomime season. “I may have seen something, but to be honest I didn’t see it,” said the head coach. “Let’s laugh all together about this. Football is also nice for these things. Everything doesn’t have to be a drama.”
Watford’s mascot is one of the more animated in the league and regularly engages with the away fans, sometimes rubbing up them up the wrong way. He was in the headlines in November last year when he joined the Watford and Manchester United players in observing the French national anthem in the wake of the Paris attacks. Some felt the presence of a comedy character trivialised the seriousness of the occasion they were marking.