CorSport: Marciniak guilty of ‘terrible’ officiating in Roma-Milan – the incidents

By Ben Dixon -

Several AC Milan players were guilty of poor performances on Thursday night against AS Roma. However, a report has claimed that the referee, Szymon Marciniak, was also guilty of a poor performance.

Fingers can be pointed in several locations regarding the blame for last night’s poor performance, and given the magnitude of the fixture – and the magnitude of the outcome – several things will have to be looked into.

According to Corriere dello Sport (via PianetaMilan), the referee was lenient from the start, and his decision regarding the red card for Zeki Celik, which was very doubtful in itself, was ‘replicated’ by Theo Hernandez. Although the decision for Theo’s red was overturned, the difference in the decisions shows a lack of authority and consistency, which murks the waters regarding the quality of officials.

There were no qualms about the Giallorossi’s first goal, but there maybe should have been a penalty for Milan. However, after restudying the decision, it was a good spot from the VAR department, showing an offside from Olivier Giroud before Mancini gave away the penalty.

Now, more so than ever, referees are under more speculation, and Thursday’s performance from Marciniak can suggest why this is the case, given the lack of consistency in the match he displayed.

Tags AC Milan Roma Milan


  1. Theo was much closer to his man..his man moved across him and clearly the intent was to get ball. Celik hacked down Leao, first pulled his shirt and then upon realizing he’s not slowing down then went for his legs. Completely different actions.. it just “look” similar..also glad the ref showed Celik a red because these things need to be stamped out from football. Back in the day they also repeatedly kicked Kaka because he was head and shoulders above them. They just couldn’t cope with him so resorted to brute tactics.

    If anything I’m not sure how the potential penalty call on the review which showed no penalty became a free kick for Roma because it touched Giroud’s hand? Wouldn’t it have been the call on the field stands therefore we have a free kick for a subsequent foul. Instead it seemed the ref used VAR to award a free kick for a handball which he didn’t see (which generally is not what VAR is for). It’s such a weird gray area. 🤷‍♂️

    1. “If anything I’m not sure how the potential penalty call on the review which showed no penalty became a free kick for Roma because it touched Giroud’s hand?”
      The penalty was potential because of Mancini’s and Smalling’s handball. But the VAR review showed that Giroud was the first to play with his hand and intentionally push the ball between the three of them.

      Overall ref was rubbish for having too strict standards for red cards and very lenient for yellow cards. Roma deserved 4-5 yellows, Milan got probably less than half they deserved.

      1. You missed the part about how did that become a free kick to Roma. VAR doesn’t intervene in awarding handball free kicks was the point. I know what the check was about.
        Should the play then resume with the refs subsequent calls or free kick to us or does he use the VAR which was for a different incident 🤷‍♂️
        Also interestingly, it was ok for Roma player to grab hold of Giroud shirt and for Tomori to get pulled to ground

  2. Teams should have the right to play badly and still win. Had we gotten the two penalties we should’ve gotten and Lukaku’s offside been flagged who knows what would’ve happened. Confidence and “Momentum” can change a game but the team/Pioli weren’t given the chance to find out thanks to the goofballs with whistles.

    1. The penalties would both be overturned by VAR if they were given. I’m a lot more salty about the goal from the corner kick which was a very obvious offside. WTH was the linesman doing?

      Momentum can change things, but the job of a coach is to keep the team in the game even if one or two decisions go against them. We had no countermeasures for Lukaku and Dybala in the first leg, and the same was true for the second leg. We had no countermeasures to Roma parking the bus in the first leg and same for second leg.

      We can blame the referee all we want, but I don’t see the refereeing as being the problem in these two games.

      1. I agree Pioli ballsed up big time both legs but we didn’t have the luck of Roma with the decisions. If they’d had the exact same decisions go against them maybe they would’ve still won, but maybe they wouldn’t. We’ll never know….

  3. The ref allowed rugby tackles in the box against Giroud and Leao. Smalling can only defend by wrapping both arms around a player and the dragging him down. And he calls Pulisic for a shoulder to shoulder challenge at the end of the half. I mention the latter call because except for the red card, which wasn’t a red, the calls all went Roma’s way.

  4. We can blame the ref all day long, the fact is that we sucked. Another Pioli epic fail. Barely had chances against 10 men Roma. Pathetic.

    1. Gary, there’s truth to what your saying. But at the same time as Roma was overloading the box and basically mugging Giroud in the box it’s hard to score. This was especially true on corners. Watch Man City struggle when teams sit deep. With a well coached team, like Roma it’s hard to break down.

  5. In my opinion the ref did well, his performance was quite good. No doubt that he’s the best ref in the world. I never seen big mistakes from him.

    1. Agree. What do you guys mean about the red not being red. This was extremely dangerous foul, it could ruin careers. It was not intentional as Rafa charged too quickly but nevertheless poor judgment on Celik’s side. My only disagreement with the ref was that he should have continued with a free kick for Milan after the VAR check. Otherwise he always explains his decisions and seemed fair. With Mancini’s provocations and some of our players reactions things could have gone ugly if the ref was someone else.

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