Kovac: Ridiculous decision

Croatia coach Niko Kovac launched a scathing attack on the controversial refereeing decision which set Brazil on their way to a 3-1 victory over his side in the World Cup opener.

Last Updated: 13/06/14 at 12:22 Post Comment

Croatia protest as referee Yuichi Nishimura points to the spot

Croatia protest as referee Yuichi Nishimura points to the spot

Neymar put Brazil ahead in contentious circumstances in the 71st minute after Japanese referee Yuichi Nishimura ruled that Fred’s tumble to the floor following the slightest contact from Croatia defender Dejan Lovren warranted a penalty.

Croatia had threatened to spoil the party as Marcelo’s own goal gave them an early lead, but Neymar levelled from range before the break and Oscar then added a late third.

But it was the decision of Nishimura which dominated the post-match discussions, with Kovac adamant that his side had been harshly treated.

Kovac said afterwards: "I don't think anybody, anywhere in the stadium, saw this as a penalty.

“If you continue like this you will have 100 penalties. I think 2.5billion people watching on TV saw this was not a penalty.

"This was ridiculous and if we continue in this way we will have a circus.

"Fred is an 85kg man and I don't believe he can be brought to the ground in such a manner.

"I cannot blame Fred at all - everyone tries it on. Like it or not, this is part and parcel of football.

“What I want is for referees to stick to the laws of the game and apply them equally to both teams."

Kovac’s side more than matched their opponents, particularly in the first half, and had chances to level the match at 2-2 before Oscar’s third on the break.

The Croatia boss added: "I would like to congratulate Brazil as they are a great opponent, but I am proud of my team.

“I am a sporting person and Brazil were excellent, but I believe Croatia deserved at least a point out of this game."

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terling needs to be told though that upon entering the Arsenal squad he will re-enact the final scene from Highlander where he will be thrown around a warehouse by cartoon dragons and then be a mere mortal that will only ever spend three to four weeks a season playing football and the rest on the physio's bed. There can be only one.....player available at The Emirates.

rodger's gusset
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he game changed in our favour when Carrick came on. We were able to play further up the pitch due to having a player who can give and go with the ball and keep possession. Yet barkley made some runs and Townsend scored a good goal but carrick's inclusion and chiellini's withdrawal made the biggest difference to the flow of the game

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o, you've not silenced anyone Andros, i'm afraid. We know you can score a great goal, and it's really handy to have your direct running and willingness to shoot on the bench. But until you can do the other things expected of a winger (beat the man, put a decent cross in, stay wide etc) then you can't expect more than a regular cameo. Wonderful goal though, what a hit! No wonder Buffon wanted the shirt.

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