Portugal bowed out of the 2022 World Cup following a 1-0 defeat to Morocco in the quarter final on Saturday at the Al Thumama Stadium.
Post game however, defender Pepe and midfielder Bruno Fernandes expressed outrage over the appointment of Facunda Tello, an Argentine, as the referee for their knockout fixture.
“I’m going to have to say it. It’s unacceptable for an Argentine referee to referee our game. After what happened yesterday, with Messi talking, all of Argentina talking and the referee comes here,” Pepe said.
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The Portugal captain in absence of Cristiano Ronaldo further added, “What did we play the second half? The goalkeeper dropped to the ground. There were only eight minutes of stoppage time. We worked hard and the referee eight minutes? We didn’t play anything in the second half. The only team that played football was us. We are sad. We had the quality to win the World Cup and we didn’t manage to.”
Bruno Fernandes also raged over the same. “I don’t know if they’re going to give the trophy to Argentina,” the Manchester United player said.
“I don’t care, I’m going to say what I think and screw them. It’s very weird that a ref officiates us from a country still in the competition. Clearly they’ve tilted the field against us,” he added.
Morocco took the lead in the third quarterfinal in the 42nd minute following a Youssef En-Nesyri header, which was enough to see them through to the semifinals, and become the first African nation to do so.