Peeved Cuadrat slams referees

Peeved Cuadrat slams referees

NorthEast United FC players train at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium on Sunday. DH PHOTO/SK DINESH

Bengaluru FC coach Carles Cuadrat on Sunday slammed the Indian Super League referees, claiming that the decision to award a penalty to NorthEast United FC at the fag end of the semifinal first leg game on Thursday, was a ‘mistake’.

“I am a football man and I can see things. Maybe the referee thinks.. 20,000 people in the stadium... let me give it. Maybe he wants that.. 20,000 people clapping. To me, it was a mistake to end that game with a penalty,” said Cuadrat at the press conference here.

“They are professionals, they can smell the opportunity and the referee gave them that chance,” he added.

Cuadrat then gave his version of the incident. “If you see the action, it is a very clear foul by (NorthEast player) Juan Mascia first. But at that moment when Harmanjot Khabra grabs Mascia when he is about to fall down, the referee wants to be part of the action and says penalty. He decides to allow the push and then whistles,” Cuadrat offered.

“Mascia has got three penalties in extra time. It means points for the team, and now one goal advantage in the semis. I have full respect for Mascia. They are competitive. He is trying to do what they have in their hands and take advantage for their team. No problem. But there is a referee who has to decide but he was not managing the situation,” he added.

As expected, NorthEast coach Eelco Schattorie didn’t share the same views and urged the Spaniard to respect the referee’s decision and move on.

“This was a clear penalty. If you are losing it is always hard. When we got a penalty against BFC (in the league stage), it was a soft one and I was the first (one) to admit it. So you should be objective. The goal they scored was a clear foul in the midfield. We can keep arguing. You have to respect the referee, but sometimes it is very very difficult. Overall I think it was a 100% penalty,” Schattorie said.