CAPE TOWN - Diego Maradona
World Cup officiating ahead of Argentina's quarter-final against
Germany, whose players had already accused his team of putting
pressure on referees and linesmen.
The Argentina manager, whose
team face Germany in Cape Town
on Saturday, launched an attack on compatriot Hector Baldassi's
refereeing of Spain's 1-0 second-round win over Portugal.
"Baldassi didn't let Portugal
reach (Spain's box), I think
every 50-50 decision went Spain's way, it was horrible
refereeing," Maradona told a news conference at Green Point
Stadium on Friday.
Maradona said he knew Baldassi
well, they spoke often and he
respected the official.
He gave him no quarter,
however, over his decision-making in
the win that sent Spain into Saturday's other quarter-final
against Paraguay in Johannesburg.
"(David Villa's) goal was
offside ... That was an offside as
big as this World Cup," Maradona said.
"Baldassi was very poor. The
(foul in the) sending off (of
Portugal's Hugo Almeida) was non existent."
Argentina and Germany were
involved in two controversial
decisions in the second round of the tournament.
Carlos Tevez was offside when
he put Argentina ahead in their
3-1 win over Mexico, while Germany's 4-1 victory over England
came after the English were denied an equaliser despite a Frank
Lampard shot crossing the line.
Maradona played down Germany's
attacking strengths by saying
England had made things easy for Germany, allowing them to hit
them on the counter-attack.
"Let's not get into our heads
the 4-1 against England, let's
not swallow the lie. England eased Germany's path and Germany
profited," he said.
"England's goal the other day
was very clear, as clear as the
goal the linesman gave to England in the 1966 final (against
"If they can't see, why are
they here? ... These things will
happen in football until goal-line technology is introduced."
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