CHRISTIAN RADNEDGE at Wembley: Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp described Chelsea’s controversial second goal against Tottenham in their FA Cup Semi-Final as a “disaster” as he reviewed his team’s 5-1 beating at Wembley.
But Redknapp also went on to say that through chasing the game at 2-1 his team left themselves too open and that this was why they went on to lose 5-1 at Wembley this evening.
The despondent Spurs manager told reporters: “I came in at half time and felt that we didn’t deserve to be behind at half time – we were the better team in the first half. I felt we could get back in the game but the second goal was a disaster it was no way near the line.”
“I felt at 2-1 we were back in the game. I brought on another striker but they picked us off – we looked too open.”
Redknapp said he considered referee Martin Atkinson’s decision to award Chelsea their controversial second goal as a “key” moment. But he added: “There’s nothing we can do about it now – you need goal line technology eventually; it’s got to happen. The referee’s just made an honest mistake – its just one of those things.
“It was key at the end of the day because we came back to 2-1, but we’re chasing the game and that’s the problem. We end up with four forwards and they came through us and we were too open at the end.
“You could tell by the reaction of the players that it wasn’t a goal – we gotta pick ourselves up now, we got some important games. I gotta find a team amongst that group that are gonna have the strength and willpower to get that 4th spot. It’s a test of character now – they’ve got to come back from today.”
If Bale had not scored after the ball fell to him, Petr Cech might well have been sent off for bringing down Emmanuel Adebayor – and Redknapp admitted he would have preferred this scenario saying “To be honest I’d rather have a penalty and a sending off rather than the goal for sure.”
Chelsea manager Roberto DiMatteo played down the controversy, saying that Chelsea’s goals either side of the decision cancelled out its importance.
He added: “We were on the lucky side – we’ve had decisions going against us before. But we scored not just two goals, we scored five so I’m not sure it would matter. “If it was just 1-0 win then maybe but we scored more than just that one.”
DiMatteo also said that the club was “extremely disappointed” with the fact that a minority of Chelsea fans disturbed the minute’s silence to remember the victims of the Hillsborough disaster 23 years ago today, and also to reflect on the passing of Livorno midfielder Piermario Morosini who died suddenly on Saturday after collapsing whilst playing.
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