Barcelona beat Real Madrid for the second time this season in a typically unhinged match at the Bernabeu that ended in a 4-3 scoreline. With three penalties — two for Barca and one for Madrid — and a sending off for red-card king Sergio Ramos, the referee's decisions had a major impact on the result. And since Real Madrid had to play the final half hour with 10 men and the match winning goal was scored from the penalty spot in the 83rd minute, the home side felt aggrieved. And by aggrieved, I of course mean Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos think the fix was in.
Said Ronaldo (via Football Espana):
“We played against 12. It's always the same. They don't allow us. Maybe they wanted Barca back in the League,” the forward said.
“I don't want to leave this inside of me and I’m not looking for excuses, but the ref is not at the required level for a game like this.
“If Barca lost today they would have been out. After five years here, I understand how things work.
“[The media] has been here for many years more than me. I have never seen Real Madrid favoured by the referees.
“I'm sure that no matter all this, we will win the League.”
Nevermind the fact that the penalty Ronaldo was awarded in the 55th minute was also questionable, let's hear what Sergio Ramos, who was sent off for apparently catching Neymar's heels in the box, has to say (again, via Football Espana):
“It's always the same. I didn't touch Neymar. But there's no point talking about it, it changes nothing,” Ramos said
“Everyone can see what happened today. We could have got something from the game but got nothing.
“There are some things you can't fight against. This was pre-meditated."
It was certainly a frustrating way to lose for Real Madrid, especially since it put Barcelona back into the title race (they are now just one point behind Atletico Madrid and Real at the top). It's also far from the first time someone has suspected an official's bias in Barcelona's favor, but if the events of that match were premeditated, then the conspirators have very impressive imaginations.
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