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Portugal coach says ‘not possible’ Ronaldo goal ruled out

Belgrade (AFP) – Portugal coach Fernando Santos said “it isn’t possible” that a what he saw as a clear goal scored by Cristiano Ronaldo in Saturday’s World Cup qualifier against Serbia could be ruled out.

With the scores level at 2-2, Ronaldo thought he had won the game in the 93rd minute when he slotted the ball home.

However, without VAR or goalline technology in use, officials decided that Serbia defender Stefan Mitrovic had cleared the ball before it crossed the line even though images appeared to show the goal should have stood.

“We scored a goal that was not given when the ball went in,” Santos told Portuguese broadcaster RTP. 

“In a match of this level, that isn’t possible.”

Portugal midfielder Danilo Pereira was equally dumbfounded.

“We tried to get a third goal and we managed to do it but the referee didn’t allow it although in my opinion it was clearly a goal,” he said.

“In any case, we can’t afford to be two goals ahead and then get pegged back.”

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  1. Turfit

    March 30, 2021 at 9:40 am

    When I ref U10 soccer, we do not have any assistant referees. Before the match while I’m checking the players in on the field of play, I would place a ball on the sideline were just the tip of the ball is still in play, I will ask the kids if the ball is in or out and all the kids will say out. Then I will walk them to the sideline were the ball is and ask them again and they will see that the ball is still in. I did this to encourage the kids to continue to play even if the ball looks like it might be out. There is a reason why there is assistant referees, their position is very important, this ref in this match was in the correct location to make the call. He is the only one who knows for certain if the call was correct or wrong (assistant ref, not the center ref).
    As to apologize, Rolando crying on the sidelines. We can’t let our superstars feel bad. If superstars “feel” wronged, it must have been wrong…… Besides, if Portugal would have not blown their 2 goal lead in this match, we would not be having this conversation.

  2. Sharon

    March 30, 2021 at 8:50 am

    If so many people saw the ball go entirely over the goal line than that means it was a goal no matter which way the camera is facing or view it. It only needs to take one person to see the ball over the line. I agree with Jesus as well. Why would the ref apologize?…Interesting and sometimes VAR can be helpful in this type of occurence. BTW I’ve been watching football since 1979 at Giants Stadium so I do recognize a goal when I see one. : D

  3. Jesus

    March 29, 2021 at 12:13 pm

    TUDN showed the replay where it can be seen that the entire ball was over the line by inches. The referee saw the replays after the game and then apologized for the error. Why would he apologize?Unless he knew for sure that it was a clear goal. They are not using goal-line technology and VAR because not all venues have it available so FIFA decided that no venue will use it even if they have it available. It is a matter of all or none.

  4. Turfit

    March 29, 2021 at 9:37 am

    Where is the replay that is lined up on the goal line to show the best view??? Camera angles are misleading. The assistant referee was on the goal line at that point, he had the best view and did not see the entire ball go past the goal post, therefore, no goal.
    Bigger question is why were they not using goal-line technology in international matches???

  5. Jesus

    March 29, 2021 at 7:12 am

    Replays showed that the entire ball was over the line. The referee did apologize to the Portugal manager after the game. It is the assistant referee that is supposed to call goal-line play as he/she has the best view and is usually in line with the ball. The referee is usually behind the play so it’s difficult for him/her to make the call. This was definitely a blown call. It underscores the need for VAR and goal-line technology in international games.

  6. Turfit

    March 28, 2021 at 2:31 pm

    The entire ball has to completely go pass the goal line. At the point that the defender cleared the ball, the assist referee was on the goal line and would have the best view to see the ball after it goes past the goal post. Very tight call regardless, camera angles can be very misleading and even with the camera angles, I think the tip of the ball did not completely cross the goal line. Again, very tight call.

  7. Sharon

    March 28, 2021 at 6:31 am

    I saw the Portugal game and that Ball WAS Certainly over the Goal Line and should have counted. Was the ref biased? Very unfair for Portugal and Ronaldo had every right to get mad.
    I’m pretty neutral except when it comes to Italy but what’s right is right and Portugal scored!

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