AC Milan head coach Stefano Pioli has criticised the referee for his part in the defeat against Atletico Madrid at San Siro tonight.
There was a game changing moment just before the half-hour mark as Franck Kessie picked up his second yellow card in quick succession after what looked like another very harsh decision from Cüneyt Çakır the referee.
The referee was again the centre of attention for awarding a late handball and a penalty to Atleti in the final seconds. After a lengthy VAR check that appeared to show Lemar push the ball into Kalulu with his arm if anything, the call stood and Luis Suarez won the game.
Pioli spoke to SportMediaset after the game to give his thoughts on his team’s performance but first that of the referee, and it would be fair to say that he was far from happy with how things went.
“I don’t think it was his best night, we were penalised a bit. I’m sorry. The numerical inferiority forced us to play another type of game. Too bad, we came close to achieving a positive result, we are sorry not to have succeeded,” he said (via MilanNews).
On the decisions that he feels Çakır got wrong, Pioli added: “Many situations, not just the red card and the penalty. Half-and-half calls he always went the other way. But let’s look at the good things we did in eleven against eleven. With a little more attention we could take home the victory, suffering and gritting our teeth. We still lacked a little something.
“We played well with numerical parity, with pace and quality. We have scored less than what we have created. We are a competitive team, but the level is very high and we have to stay inside the games for ninety minutes. We have spent a lot, but we will recover our energies, both physical and mental. From tomorrow we will think about Atalanta.”