Football world explodes over controversial Ronaldo red card

Cristiano Ronaldo has burst into tears over what’s been labelled ‘one of the worst refereeing decisions’ in recent memory.

Juventus kicked off their Champions League campaign with a 2-0 victory at Valencia, but the match was overshadowed by the controversial red card.

Ronaldo’s Champions League debut for Juventus lasted less than half an hour as the Portuguese star was red-carded after a collision with Valencia defender Jeison Murillo.

After tangling with Ronaldo, Colombian Murillo tumbled to the ground holding his face, and referee Felix Brych consulted with the assistant official beside the goal before giving the competition’s all-time record goal-scorer his marching orders.

Cristiano Ronaldo couldn’t believe it. Image: Getty

Ronaldo crumpled to the ground in shock, bursting into tears as he made his way off the field.

“There’s nothing in that … one of the worst referee decisions I’ve seen for a long, long time,” one commentator said for Optus Sport.

Fans also flocked to social media to slam the ‘crazy’ decision.

“The only thing I can say is that VAR could have helped the referee make the right decision,” said Juve coach Massimiliano Allegri, lamenting the lack of video technology in UEFA tournaments.

“It is very disappointing, we almost lost because of that and we will be without Ronaldo for the next (game).”

But Juventus, who had totally dominated until Ronaldo’s dismissal, were awarded two penalties within six minutes either side of half-time, and Miralem Pjanic confidently dispatched them both.

The Italian champions defended well thereafter to keep the hosts at arm’s length, although Juve goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny did save a Daniel Parejo spot-kick in the final minute of injury-time.

Manchester United top the early Group H table, though, after continuing their recent upturn in form by brushing aside Young Boys 3-0 in Bern to notch a third straight win in all competitions.

Jose Mourinho’s men were inspired by Paul Pogba on the artificial pitch, as the French World Cup winner drilled home a brilliant opener before converting a penalty on the stroke of half-time, and setting up Anthony Martial for the third.

with AFP