Edition 1484
21 July 2018
Edition: 1484

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Ronaldo backs referee over controversial spot-kick

by TPN/PA, in Sport · 12-04-2018 08:46:00 · 0 Comments

Cristiano Ronaldo insists referee Michael Oliver was right to award Real Madrid the injury-time penalty which he dispatched to send his side through to the Champions League semi-finals.

Ronaldo backs referee over controversial spot-kick

 

After Juventus had wiped out Real's three-goal advantage from the first leg with a Mario Mandzukic double and Blaise Matuidi's second-half goal, Lucas Vazquez was bundled over in the box by Mehdi Benatia in the third minute of added time and Oliver pointed to the spot.

 

Ronaldo showed great composure to fire the ball past substitute Wojciech Szczesny - who had replaced Gianluigi Buffon after he was sent off for protesting the decision - to secure a 4-3 aggregate victory.

 

The protests, which lasted several minutes, made little sense to Ronaldo who waited patiently for his chance to wrap up the tie.

"I don't understand why they are protesting," he said in quotes published by Marca.

 

"Lucas was tackled from behind and if they don't give him the penalty, it's a goal.

 

"The pulse increased, but I calmed down, and I knew I'd be decisive."

 

Ronaldo knew his side would have to fight until the final whistle against a team as good as Juventus.

 

Despite the 3-1 defeat on the night, the Portugal forward is grateful to be through to the last four of the competition they won in Cardiff last year.

 

"We have suffered, but it helps us to learn," he added.

 

"In football, nothing is given away, you have to fight until the end.

 

"Madrid could've scored more goals but Juve and Buffon were good."

 

Juventus' chairman Andrea Agnelli called for VAR to be introduced to the Champions League after his side's exit from the tournament.

 

Agnelli felt the decision to award the penalty was wrong and claimed Oliver should not have sent Gianluigi Buffon off in what is expected to be his final Champions League game.

 

"VAR has to be introduced," Agnelli told Mediaset Premium.

 

"We will bring it forward and will look to make it happen.

 

"In this situation, it meant the possibility to move forward in the Champions League when we deserved extra time.

 

"We need to change the referee designator every two or three years. Buffon sent off? The referee didn't know how to handle the situation."

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Edition 1484
21 July 2018
Edition: 1484

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

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