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Euro media slam Real's controversial win

by Staff reporter
13 Apr 2018 at 07:17hrs | Views
FURIOUS REACTION . . . The daily Barcelona-based Sport newspaper has dubbed the Champions League match between Real Madrid and Juventus on Wednesday night as the "Theft of the Century". - Mailonline
Former Paraguay international goalkeeper Jose Luis Chilavert has blamed 'the football mafia' for Real Madrid's controversial win over in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday night amid fury in both the Italian and Spanish media.

The 52-year-old tweeted his displeasure at Juve's 3-1 victory at Madrid after Cristiano Ronaldo's late penalty.

"The football mafia have ensured that Juventus did not qualify," Chilavert wrote on his Twitter account.

A number of tweets started appearing around the world in the final 10 minutes of the game suggesting Madrid would be awarded a penalty and Juve would have a man sent off.

The Italian media condemned a "robbery" on the Serie A leaders.

Corriere dello Sport led with "Che Furto!" which reads "What a robbery!" after English referee Michael Oliver pointed to the spot and sent off legendary goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon following a foul from Mehdi Benatia on Lucas Vasquez.

"Champions League, non-existent penalty at the 93rd minute denies Juve the coup at Real: 1-3. Buffon sent off: Referee should be ashamed."

That will likely prove to be Buffon's swansong in the competition and La Gazetta dello Sport ran with "the rage and the pride" having seen a monumental comeback from the Old Lady.

"Juventus furious," Gazzetta dello Sport continues on the front page. "They dominate in Madrid, but go out to a very dubious penalty in the 97th minute. 3-1 and goodbye to the Champions League. After an epic match, the Bianconeri explode."

While the Italian sports pages were left to rue a contentious penalty that snatched away a place in the semi-finals, the Spanish press also expressed their surprise at the injustice they had witnessed in Madrid on Wednesday night.

"The theft of the century" screamed the Barcelona-based Sport with Buffon's contentious dismissal the front page image beneath the bold headline.

Marca, unsurprisingly, defended the game-changing decision having used a reverse angle to show Benatia's hand on Vasquez's back as he goes down.

The Spanish publication headlines with "it was a penalty" which is a view that is sure to divide the European sports press, much as it has done since the award by referee Oliver.

The holders struggled badly at the Santiago Bernebeu on the night and a brace from Mario Mandzukic along with a scrappy goal from Blaise Matuidi suggested they would join Barcelona in making a surprise quarter-finals exit.

But after Vasquez went down inside the area with 30 seconds remaining of normal time, Englishman Oliver pointed to the spot before the angry reaction of Buffon saw him awarded a straight red card.

Don't expect the Italian press to forget this one in a hurry.

Buffon launched an extraordinary attack on referee Michael Oliver, labelling him a 'murderer' and accusing him of having 'no heart in his chest' after Juventus were knocked out of the Champions League by Real Madrid.

"It was a tenth of a penalty," Buffon, who was playing in his last-ever Champions League game, told Mediaset. "I know the referee saw, it was certainly a dubious incident.

"And a dubious incident at the 93rd minute when we had a clear penalty denied [for a challenge on Juan Cuadrado] in the first leg, you cannot award that at this point.

"The team gave their all, but a human being cannot destroy dreams like that at the end of an extraordinary comeback on a dubious situation.

"Clearly you cannot have a heart in your chest, but a bin. On top of that, if you don't have the character to walk on a pitch like this in a stadium like this, you can sit in the stands with your wife, your kids, drinking your Sprite and eating crisps. You cannot ruin the dreams of a team.

"You have to be a murderer to make the last two decisions the referee made."

Gary Lineker came to the defence of Buffon on BT Sport's coverage of the match, questioning whether it was necessary for Oliver to send the 40-year-old off in what turned out to be his final match in the competition.

Benatia maintained his innocence in the penalty incident, insisting that he did not push Vazquez and claiming the Madrid winger went down out of desperation.

"I can promise you, I did not push him. He went down because he had nothing else to do at that point," Benatia said.

"Giving a penalty like that at the 93rd minute is simply absurd. Bayern Munich had the exact same thing last year. What can you do?"

Juve boss Massimiliano Allegri was not so sure about Oliver's decision and called for the introduction of VAR.

Source - Mailonline