An apoplectic Gianluigi Buffon waged a furious tirade on the referee in the wake of Juventus’ heartbreaking Champions League exit against Real Madrid.
The Bianconeri felt extremely aggrieved when, having did so much hard work to claw back the 3-0 deficit to 3-3, English referee Michael Oliver awarded the hosts a penalty in the final moment.
Medhi Benatia was penalised for an apparent nudge to the back of Lucas Vazquez, who went down and won the kick which was dispatched by Cristiano Ronaldo to send his side through, much to the fury of Buffon.
“If you are that cynical, then instead of a heart, the referee has a rubbish bin,” he raged in an interview with Mediaset afterwards. “At that moment, I could have told him anything but he’d have to have feelings to understand.
“If you don’t, you should be in the stands because it isn’t a question of a referee knowing how to officiate. For such a thing to happen… we deserved to at least go to extra-time.
“A referee must be prepared not to ruin a game like that. You can’t be that cynical and kill a team’s dream after playing a match like that.
“That referee doesn’t have the courage or personality to officiate at this level. He should have been in the stands, sitting with his wife and enjoying the game with a bag of crisps and a Sprite.”
However, a sense of pride does exist amid the anger, while there is also a sense of what might have been following the Bianconeri’s disappointing first leg display.
“We started by saying we had a 0.0001 per cent chance of making it through but in life you never know and I know that I can always count on this group of guys. I’m proud of them but there’s also anger and regret,” he added.
“After the first leg, we knew it wouldn’t be an easy comeback but then we played like that and left everything on the field. I repeat, that referee doesn’t know s**t. I was sorry about leaving the team with 10 but now we will focus with anger on the league.”