Monday, January 30, 2023

Morocco launch official complaint about semi-final referee after World Cup elimination

Morocco launch official complaint about semi-final referee after World Cup elimination

The Moroccan Football Federation has filed a formal complaint against the referee who officiated Wednesday’s FIFA World Cup semifinal.

The Atlas Lions became the first African team in tournament history to reach a semi-final, but they lost 2-0 to France and will now face Croatia for third place on Saturday.

Morocco was dissatisfied with the decisions made by the night’s referee, Cesar Ramos, despite being full of pride after creating tournament history.

The Mexican referee, who has been a full FIFA international since 2014, has been accused of rejecting “two obvious penalties” in the first half of the match.

“The FMRF has written to the relevant body to review the refereeing decisions that deprived the Moroccan team of two penalties that were indisputable in the view of several refereeing specialists,” the Moroccan ruling body said in a statement.

“The FMRF was equally astonished that the video assistant referee (VAR) did not react to these situations.”

The FMRF was disappointed that Ramos did not award a penalty to the North Africans when France’s Theo Hernandez collided with Sofiane Boufal in the area during the first half.

Instead, the official cautioned Morocco’s winger for a foul.

Second, they protested the fouling of replacement Selim Amallah in the penalty area as he anticipated the delivery of a corner kick.

VAR was not implemented during any of the instances.

Adrian Durham, a talkSPORT host who attended the game in Qatar’s Al-Bayt, felt the Atlas Lions were unlucky not to advance to the finals, as they were the better team on the night.

“Morocco are the winners tonight in all but the result. Their fans have been magnificent. Their fans have shown some true emotion and travelled in numbers,” he said.

“This is going to hurt Moroccan football and those players for a long time.

“They’ve united the Arab world. That in itself is an achievement. Here they are, unlucky losers tonight.”

Meanwhile, Morocco manager Walid Regragui said after the final whistle: “The most important thing is to have shown a good face, to have shown that football in Morocco exists and that we have great supporters.”

Morocco launch official complaint about semi-final referee after World Cup elimination

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