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'We have seen it on the video' - St Pat's boss Tim Clancy blasts crucial penalty call after European exit

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Players and staff of St Patrick's Athletic and CSKA Sofia after the UEFA Europa Conference League third qualifying round second leg match at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Players and staff of St Patrick's Athletic and CSKA Sofia after the UEFA Europa Conference League third qualifying round second leg match at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Players and staff of St Patrick's Athletic and CSKA Sofia after the UEFA Europa Conference League third qualifying round second leg match at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Tim Clancy suggested that the larger club benefited from the big calls as St Patrick's Athletic exited Europe in controversial fashion - but he admitted his side should have been more clinical when it counted against CSKA Sofia.

The Saints suffered a two-goal defeat in Tallaght to go out of the Europa Conference League with a contentious penalty concession nine minutes from time saving a CSKA side who failed to impress across both legs and looked set to be brought to extra-time.

Replays indicated that the ball struck the arm of CSKA attacker Mauricio Garcez De Jesus before it came off the hand of home defender Harry Brockbank, but the Romanian official pointed to the spot, infuriating Clancy who was already aggrieved about a free kick that went the way of the Bulgarians.

Ill-feeling spilled over after the final whistle with a player from both sides sent off after the Saints reacted angrily to CSKA celebrating in front of local support.

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Joe Redmond reacts to a missed chance against CSKA Sofia. Photo by Tyler Miller/Sportsfile

Joe Redmond reacts to a missed chance against CSKA Sofia. Photo by Tyler Miller/Sportsfile

Joe Redmond reacts to a missed chance against CSKA Sofia. Photo by Tyler Miller/Sportsfile

Clancy had a lot of things on his mind in the aftermath, including missed chances prior to the spot kick incident.

"The second goal was really a killer. They won’t have to come out and explain why a free kick is given in front of the dugout. I have no idea why it is," said Clancy, who then moved onto the penalty incident.

“We have seen it on the video, it looks like it hits their player's hand first before it comes back onto Harry’s. Again, he’s really quick to put the whistle in his mouth and give the bigger club a decision.

"I went into speak to them (officials) there but I wasn’t allowed. A lot of the decisions, any time we went near them he was blowing the whistle but our players were getting the same contact and not getting decisions.

“It’s frustrating because the difference between the two teams over two legs is a penalty that shouldn’t be given and a corner (CSKA's lead goal came from that route).

“Over two legs we matched them. We’re not naive enough to think we’re a better team but we did well over the two legs and we were unlucky.

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“At this level of football, when you get the chances we had you have to take them and their keeper made a few good saves."

Clancy was unable to shed light on the full-time scenes which culminated in Adam O'Reilly and CSKA's Bradley de Nooijer belatedly receiving red cards.

Saints midfielder Jamie Lennon was in the middle of it and explained how the melee was sparked.

“I think it was just frustration from the players," he said, "Their man was celebrating in front of our fans and I don’t really like that.

“Looking back it’s probably a compliment to us. They were probably thinking it would be easy to get through to the play-offs.”


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