Friday 23 February 2018

Fiorentina fume at ref Ovrebro

Giancarlo Abete, president of the Italian football federation (FIGC), has lambasted referee Tom Henning Ovrebro after his performance in Bayern Munich's 2-1 Champions League victory over Fiorentina Wednesday night.

Ovrebro received death threats last year after a number of controversial decisions in Chelsea's semi-final defeat by Barcelona in the same competition and the Norwegian has once again become the focus of attention.

He harshly sent off Massimo Gobbi for an innocuous-looking tackle before allowing Miroslav Klose to remain on the field for what appeared a much more dangerous challenge and, to rub salt into the Fiorentina wounds, it was Klose who nodded in the last-minute winner while clearly offside.

Viola players and staff roundly criticised Ovrebro after the game and Abete has added his voice to the protests. "It was a very serious error," said the Italian football chief. "Fiorentina were clearly disadvantaged and, even if it is true that mistakes can happen, it is also true that those of (Wednesday) were too evident: the offside wasn't a question of centimetres, but of metres."

Abete revealed he called UEFA president Michel Platini yesterday morning, as well as Fiorentina owner Andrea Della Valle, to express his feelings.

Ovrebro made headlines last year when he denied Chelsea a string of seemingly clearcut penalties, while he also harshly dismissed Barca's Eric Abidal.

It is not the first time he has faced criticism from the FIGC. During Euro 2008 he disallowed Luca Toni's goal against Romania for offside, later admitting he had made a mistake.

Ovrebro also angered Juventus fans in the Champions League group stages when he allowed a late Bordeaux equaliser to stand from a clearly offside position.

Irish Independent

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